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Thursday, March 18, 2010

~ PLANTAIN - KELA CHIPS ~


Plantain/Kela Wafers (yellow plantain salted chips)
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INGREDIENTS : Raw plantains (snap attached to this note), salt, any other seasoning of your choice

UTENSILS NEEDED : thin slicer, kadhai, oil, slotted spoon
big vessel to store peeled plantains, thick dry kitchen cloth, plate, paper tissue, an airtight container to store chips

1. buy raw plantains from the market (the snap of the kind of plantains to buy is attached to this note, they are available in all supermakrkets. buy plantains that have fresh totally green skin, preferably no black spots)

2. the quality of chips is best when the chips are done on the very same day that you buy the plantains. so buy it & make the chips the same day if possible. if the plantains start ripening, its difficult to slice them or get crispness. at the most, leave it in the refrigerator for a day, but make sure you fry them the next day.

3. in a big open mouth vessel, fill cold water (fridge type cold water), add little salt to this water, mix well & keep this water ready to soak the peeled plantains. (this helps prevent the plantains from getting black while you are making other chips)

4. cut the top & bottom tip of the plantain with a knife. cut the plantain in the center so you have 2 equal parts of 1 plantain (this makes it easier to peel & fry) then run a small sharp knife vertically to cut through the thick skin, insert the small knife edge inside the plantain & start pulling the entire thick green color skin out to get the inside pulp of the plantain. be careful not to break the inside pulp of plantain. make sure no skin remains on the plantain, otherwise it will be difficult to slice chips. once u hv nicely peeled the raw plantain, soak it in the cold water that is prepared earlier.

5. repeat this process for all the raw plantains that you have got.

6. now plantains are ready to fry. to make the chips, you will need a slicer (the one we use to make potato chips while making bhajiyaas, a slicer that will slice thin chips like lays chips) & oil.

7. keep the slicer clean, dry & ready to use.

8. fill half the kadhai with oil to fry the plantain chips on medium to high heat (like you would use to do any frying). on the cooking range here, i keep the gas mark to 7. if your cooking range is same as US, you can do this too. oil will heat after about 7-10 minutes.

9. keep a dry clean thick cloth ready. pat dry a plantain from the cold water to slice chips.

keep salt & seasonings ready for sprinkling on chips.

keep one airtight container dry, ready & open to put batches of chips.

10. method to make chips - once oil is heated, hold the slicer, little above the hot kadhai, place plantain vertically on the slicer & directly make the chips in the hot oil kadhai. the flat base of the plantain cut from the center is where you start so you get round chips.

after slicing half the plantain directly in the oil, check the kadhai, there should only be one thick layer of chips in the kadhai. be careful that the hot oil does not spurt on u while slicing, so adjust the slicer on the kadhai accordingly. pat the chips with the slotted spoon if you feel that the chips are sticking to one another.

11. let them fry well on one side, slowly turn them over & fry them all till the oil almost stops sizzling, by then the uncooked plantain chips will be well cooked & will look like market quality thin deep fried chips. one batch of chips fries on both sides in less than 5 minutes, so its real fast if ur slicer is nice & thin..

12. remove from oil in a clean dry plate. u can keep layers of paper tissue on the plate so it soaks excess oil. while there is little oil on chips, sprinkle little salt, seasonings & mix the chips well with hand so salt, seasonings stays on the chips.

13. repeat the slicing of plantains in the hot oil kadhai for other plantains. while doing this, remember to take only plantain out of the cold water at a time, pat dry before slicing & keep the remaining plantains soaked in cold water so that they dont start turning black.

14. while the next batch of plantain chips is frying, put the previous salted batch of plantain chips that is in the plate in an airtight container. keep repeating this process for all batches.

if u wait to salt all the chips after they fry, the chips hv soaked the oil, so the salt does not stay on the chips, so remember to salt every batch of chips on the clean dry plate & keep transferring every batch to an airtight container while the other chips are frying.

15. after the chips cool down, u will find that the taste & crispness is exactly like the chips that we get in the market.

16. since we are making the chips at home & no preservatives, i usually make chips of 6 plantains at a time, stays crisp & fresh for at least 15-20 days, so u can try this too.

one plantain makes over 100 chips, so its lot of fun food for kids, quick & easy snack anytime..

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