This is the time of the year when we entertain the most. While there are the big-meal gatherings, lots of cocktail parties abound, as well as having people over for drinks and little bites or nibbles. Try these sweet plantains nachos, they are sure to be a crowd pleaser.

Sweet plantains, savoury meat, sharp, salty cheese – YUM!

Yields 24 bite-size pieces

INGREDIENTS

  • Sweet Plantain Nachos (Photo by Cynthia Nelson)

    2 large half-ripe plantains, unpeeled with tops and bottoms snipped off

  • Tap water
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons minced onions
  • ½ tablespoon chopped fresh herbs (thyme, celery, tarragon or parsley)
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • Minced hot pepper, to taste
  • 4 ounces minced/ground beef (grade A or B)
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese

DIRECTIONS

  1. Add water and plantains to a pot, cover and bring to a boil; let boil for 6 minutes only. Drain well and let plantain cool in its skin until easy to handle.
  2. Line baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  3. Heat a pan with oil over medium heat.
  4. Add onions, herbs and garlic along with a little salt and pepper, stir to mix and cook on low heat until the pan is fragrant and onions softened.
  5. Raise heat to high and add ground beef and cook until it is no longer pink and lightly brown. Season with salt and pepper to taste, cook for another minute and then remove from heat and set aside.
  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  7. Peel the plantains and cut each plantain in half, lengthways.
  8. Using a small melon baller or a teaspoon, scoop out the centre of the cut plantain where the seeds would be, creating a cavity to stuff the plantains
  9. Transfer the plantains to the lined baking sheet.
  10. Fill the cavity of each piece of plantain with minced beef and sprinkle the top with cheese.
  11. Transfer to the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until the cheese is melted and golden.
  12. Cut into bite-size wedges and serve.