Ugandan-Style Plantain Lasagna

Plantains, or cooking bananas, are one of Uganda’s main food crops and can be found in many different recipes. This flavorful plantain lasagna has been adapted from a local recipe. The top custard layer gives it a welcome hint of sweetness to contrast with some of the other spices.

Ingredients

  • 4 large ripe plantains
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup diced green bell pepper
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 large cloves garlic, finely grated
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • ½ teaspoon cumin powder 
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 pound ground turkey 
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) fire roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 2 cups shredded mild cheddar cheese
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¾ to 1 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon Nielsen-Massey Ugandan Pure Vanilla Extract

Directions

Peel the plantains, then slice each lengthwise, about 5 or 6 slices per plantain; set aside.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat until hot. Fry the plantains in batches, 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Add a little extra oil, if needed, between batches. Remove the plantains from the skillet and transfer to a paper towel lined plate to remove any excess oil.

Preheat the oven to 350°F. In the same skillet, increase the heat to medium-high and add the green pepper, onions, garlic and spices. Cook and stir for 3 minutes or until the peppers and onions have started to soften. Add the turkey and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally until the meat is cooked through, the vegetables have begun to brown and most of the liquid has evaporated. Add the tomatoes and cook for 2 minutes or until the tomatoes are fully heated.

Spray the inside of a 9×9-inch oven-proof dish with non-stick cooking spray. Line the bottom of the dish with 1/3 of the plantain strips leaving little to no space between them. Use a slotted spoon to spread 1/3 of the meat mixture over the plantain layer and sprinkle with 1/2 cup of the shredded cheese. Repeat the layers twice, ending with the cheese on top.

Pour the remaining liquid from the skillet into a measuring cup and add milk to yield 1 cup of liquid. Pour into a small bowl and whisk in the eggs and vanilla extract. Pour the custard liquid over the lasagna, covering the top layer entirely. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the custard has set. Cool for a few minutes before serving.

  • 4 large ripe plantains
  • 59 ml vegetable oil
  • 149 grams diced green bell pepper
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 3 large cloves garlic, finely grated
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • ½ teaspoon cumin powder 
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 454 grams ground turkey 
  • 1 can (411 grams) fire roasted diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 227 grams shredded mild cheddar cheese
  • 2 large eggs
  • 213 to 284 ml milk
  • 1 tablespoon Nielsen-Massey Ugandan Pure Vanilla Extract

Directions

Peel the plantains, then slice each lengthwise, about 5 or 6 slices per plantain; set aside.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat until hot. Fry the plantains in batches, 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Add a little extra oil, if needed, between batches. Remove the plantains from the skillet and transfer to a paper towel lined plate to remove any excess oil.

Preheat the oven to 177°C. In the same skillet, increase the heat to medium-high and add the green pepper, onions, garlic and spices. Cook and stir for 3 minutes or until the peppers and onions have started to soften. Add the turkey and cook for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring occasionally until the meat is cooked through, the vegetables have begun to brown and most of the liquid has evaporated. Add the tomatoes and cook for 2 minutes or until the tomatoes are fully heated.

Spray the inside of a 22×22-centimeter oven-proof dish with non-stick cooking spray. Line the bottom of the dish with 1/3 of the plantain strips leaving little to no space between them. Use a slotted spoon to spread 1/3 of the meat mixture over the plantain layer and sprinkle with 64 grams of the shredded cheese. Repeat the layers twice, ending with the cheese on top.

Pour the remaining liquid from the skillet into a measuring cup and add milk to yield 250 ml of liquid. Pour into a small bowl and whisk in the eggs and vanilla extract. Pour the custard liquid over the lasagna, covering the top layer entirely. Bake for 25-30 mins or until the custard has set. Cool for a few minutes before serving.

  • 25 minprep

  • 25 mincook

  • 9servings