Traveling Tastebuds is taking you to beautiful Puerto Rico for some traditional cuisine. Guineítos en escabeche, or pickled green bananas, is a dish typically served at holiday parties (i.e. Thanksgiving to Three Kings Day). It is served as an appetizer or side dish. An escabeche refers to a food marinated in an acidic (usually white vinegar) mixture. Puerto Rico has become something of a foodie paradise over the years. Chefs on the Island combine traditional and trendy flavors, merging international and local cuisine. The traditional dishes, which you can easily find, are definitely worth a try too.
This Puerto Rican delicacy tastes fantastic, and it pairs perfectly with some roasted pork. Here is the recipe for Guineítos en escabeche:
2 pounds (about 10) of unripe, green bananas (the greener, the better)
2 large onions sliced into thin rings or chopped
½ cup of white vinegar (can be substituted for apple cider vinegar)
4 garlic cloves, crushed
8-10 Spanish olives (optional)
½ teaspoon of salt
½ teaspoon whole black peppercorns
3 -4 bay leaves
1 cup of olive oil
*Additional salt and pepper to taste
- Cut the unripe banana tips and add them to your large pot with the skin still on.
- Add water to slightly covering the bananas.
- Add 1 to 2 tablespoons of salt and 2 teaspoons of oil to make them peel easier.
- Boil the bananas for approximately 20 minutes on medium-low heat. If you boil them too long, they will come apart.
- While the bananas cook, prepare the escabeche by heating a large size saucepan to medium heat. Pour in some olive oil for sautéing and add the rest of the ingredients.
- Stir them well and place on medium heat until the mixture gets hot. Then reduce the heat to low and let it simmer for approximately one hour.
- Peel off the skins of the bananas and cut them into 1-inch size rounds. Place them in a bowl and add the escabeche sauce.
- Stir and mix well. You can serve the guineítos hot or cold.