Friday, August 12, 2011

Pastelón (Sweet Plantain Puerto Rican Lasagna)

Our friend Mari introduced us to this several months ago and I was waiting for the perfect opportunity to try it out for myself. Pastelón, which is a Puerto Rican Lasagna, is just like lasagna but instead of lasagna pasta noodles you used slices of plantain. It has a mix of all these neat flavors, it's incredibly filling, and the sweet plantains are amazing. I'm sure there are many versions of this, but the one I used includes raisins and olives. I'm sure you can leave them out or just use a little. It's also not the healthiest thing I've ever made. But it is delicious, no doubt about it!

1 lb. ground beef
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
1 green pepper, diced
1/2 cup chopped cilantro (or just use cilantro paste like I do)
2 tsp adobo (in the international/ethnic food aisle or spice aisle)
2 tsp italian seasoning
2 tbsp vinegar
1 envelope Sazón (in the international/ethnic food aisle)
2 tsp of bay leaves
8 green stuff olives, cut in half
1/2 cup raisins
4 or 5 plantains, peeled & cut into long strips (For really great directions on pictures on plantains, go here. I could try to explain it to you, but it won't be pretty.)
1/2 cup tomato sauce
3 eggs
2 tbsp milk
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
Mix ground beef, garlic, onion, green pepper, and cilantro in a large bowl. 
Then mix in adobo, italian seasoning, vinegar, & Sazon.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat and add 2 tbs of olive oil. 
Toss in the beef mixture and cook until brown.
Add bay leaves, olives, raisins, & tomato sauce. 
Lower heat and simmer for 10 minutes. 

Remove from heat.
Meanwhile, heat another large skillet with oil, on medium heat, just enough to cover the bottom. 

Fry the plantains, a while on each side, until they are golden brown & crispy.

Butter the sides & bottom of an 8 x 13 baking dish.
Layer the bottom most layer with plantains.

Spread a layer of ground beef on top of the layer of plantains. 

Top with a layer of mozzarella cheese and another layer of plantains. 

Continue the process, ending with plantains.

Mix eggs & milk in small bowl. Pour evenly over the last layer. Let it soak in and then sprinkle with a last little bit of cheese. 
Bake in oven for 20 to 30 minutes.

What do you think? Comments? Suggestions? I would love to know that you visited my blog. Please leave me a message letting me know you were here! Did you try out a recipe? Let me know! I would love to hear from you :-)

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