Plantains in Spicy Ginger-Tomato Sauce

For the past three days, I have been in a quandary hated by food bloggers the world over. It’s called, “Goddammit, No Good Pictures.” I made this delicious plantain dish on Friday as part of my austerity regimen* and since then have been wrestling with the fact that thanks to the hideous fluorescent lighting in my kitchen, every photo I took was utter shite. After three consecutive nights of relishing the leftovers, however, I decided that you are able to look past the sickly green-yellow hue and see the yumminess within. Besides, you deserve it. Here goes.

Ingredients:

Two ripe plantains, peeled and sliced into 1 cm rounds

2 cloves garlic, chopped

A one inch (2.5 cm) knob of ginger, chopped

½ a large onion or 1 small onion, coarsely chopped

1 teaspoon ancho chile powder (ground dried red poblano peppers, in the UK probably available in specialty stores)

1 teaspoon ground coriander

2 fresh chile peppers of varying spiciness, sliced in 1-2 mm rounds: I used a Thai chile and an attractive red chile of unknown provenance

1 can plum tomatoes

1 teaspoon salt

4 tablespoons olive oil

1-2 scallions, thinly sliced

Method:

Heat three tablespoons of the olive oil in a frying pan large enough to hold all of the plantains in a single layer and fry until soft and golden. Remove from pan and set aside. Over medium heat, sauté the coriander and chile powder for about a minute, then stir in the garlic, ginger, and onion, and sauté until transparent. Add chile peppers and sauté briefly, then add the plum tomatoes (including juice). Stir in salt, reduce heat slightly, and continue to cook, breaking up tomatoes gently with your spoon, until about half of the liquid has evaporated and flavours are incorporated (about ten to fifteen minutes). If liquid appears to be evaporating too rapidly, reduce heat. Stir in the plantains and cover. Cook until plantains are heated through.

Top with sliced scallions and serve with rice, or as a side dish to steak.

Serves 4-6.

* I am completely broke and thus have become temporarily vegetarian.

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