Plantains are very special in my opinion, because they can be eaten and still be delicious no matter how ripe they are. I am hard pressed to think of another starch that has similar attributes: I cannot remember how many times I went to the grocery store, determined to buy fresh vegetables to incorporate into scrumptious dishes, and how many times half of my purchases would end up spoilt before I even had the time to cook them. The story ends a little more happily when plantains were part of my purchases. I typically buy plantains at different states of ripeness so as not to have to cook them all at once, granted this would not be the worst thing in the world. It would just give me an excuse to eat alloco for lunch, afternoon snack, and dinner.
Similarly to bananas, plantains get blacker and softer as their ripen. When they get very soft, and yield to the touch, even when they have turned black, they can still be used to make a delicious dish called klaklo. Klaklo is a dish originating from Côte d’Ivoire, in West Africa. For more delicious tropical recipes, check out www.tropicalchefs.com