Anyone who has been on the Paleo train for more than a minute has likely eaten their share of lettuce wrapped items. And while I too enjoy a good lettuce wrap from time to time, there are moments that just call for something a little more substantial.
The other day I picked up local grass fed beef and decided to kick off the end of summer with some grilled burgers. Because nothing helps me forget that this summer flew by in a nano second and that the leaves are already falling more than a thick juicy patty grilled on an open flame. It is the quintessential food of summer.
As I began assembling my burger toppings I felt a tinge of jealousy. While I should have been drooling over the smell of the grill I was actually feeling sorry for myself about the fact that I was about to eat yet another lettuce wrapped thing while my kids and husband enjoyed their burgers on a bun. So I made a quick u turn on the lettuce wrap and decided to try a different breed of burger, a plantain burger.
OMG yes! As soon as I bit into my burger all jealousy subsided. Not only was I more satisfied than I am after my usual lettuce wraps, I was in flavor heaven. I actually felt sorry for the rest of my family not eating their burger on a plantain. Seriously, I can’t believe I haven’t done this before!
The key to a plantain that will hold up as a burger bun is to use a very starchy plantain, aka a green one. Once your plantains have reached the point of yellow with black spots they’ll probably be too soft to hold all your toppings. Yellow plantains also take on more of a sweetness that lends itself better to sweet flavours, imo.
My favorite way to enjoy plantains is twice fried, also known as tostones. They become soft and fluffy on the inside with a great crunchy shell, the perfect vessel for all your burger needs. One full plantain is a good size for one burger so if you make these for a group make sure you get a bunch.
For one burger you will need:
One tbsp coconut oil
Heat your oil over medium low heat
Slice your plantain in half and slowly start to brown in the hot oil. Don’t cook it too fast as burned plantains take on a bitter flavour, allow it to caramelize slow and low.
When your plantain is golden brown on all sides remove from the heat and place on a paper towel to cool for a minute.
Using the back of a glass gently flatten the plantain to just over ¼” thick.
Return to the oil and continue frying slow and low until it super golden brown and crispy.
Drain on a paper towel and sprinkle with sea salt while still hot.
Top with burger toppings of choice and enjoy.