Fried bananas are one of my favorite ways to start a party with a bang. They always impress with their fresh gooey-ness and exotic nature.
Though simple to prepare, this recipe is a little on the time consuming side and must be started early. I like to make fried bananas as an appetizer for a light, summery, easy-to-prepare dinner. While the bananas cook, I can prepare the rest of the food and get the house ready.
Prep time: 35-40 minutes
(for the bananas)
- 8 ripe regular bananas or 12 baby bananas
- rice flour
- frying oil (I use canola)
- fresh shredded coconut (not the dried kind you use for baking or putting on ice cream, you can find it frozen in indian stores)
(for the dipping sauce)
- cane sugar (palm sugar, if available)
- red chilli powder (Indian style or Italian peperoncino, do not use cayenne pepper)
- Fill a large, wide, flat pan with enough oil that the oil is 1 1/2 inch deep in the pan.
- Set the heat to medium/medium high and let the oil heat up. It is ready to use when a drop of batter immediately starts to sizzle but not burn.
- In a large, wide bowl, combine one cup of rice flour, 3/4 cup of water, and 1/4 cup fresh coconut and mix thoroughly.
- Put the batter in the fridge until needed. (TIP: make the batter in the morning before you dinner and refrigerate all day if possible. This creates a thicker batter that sticks the the bananas better)
- Peel half the bananas, cut into thirds, and cut each third in half through the middle into two flat pieces. (If using baby bananas, cut each banana in half and then cut each half lengthwise into two flat pieces)
- When the oil is hot enough, thoroughly coat each banana piece with the batter and drop it in the oil.
- Let the bananas fry for about 4-5 minutes per side and then flip with tongs. The outer coating should be firm and golden brown, but not too dark. If the bananas are squishy or difficult to pick up, you need to increase the heat.
- Peel and cut the rest of the bananas.
- Set up a plate with three paper towels layered on top, and transfer the first batch of bananas to the paper towels when they are ready.
- Coat the remaining bananas and set them up to fry.
- In a wide, flat bowl for dipping, thoroughly mix 1 1/2 cups of yogurt with 1 tablespoon sugar and 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder.
- Serve the first batch of bananas with the dipping sauce and listen to your guests gasp in delight!