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Monday, July 26, 2010

Plantain & Black Bean Croquettes w. Cilantro Crème

I recently read about a restaurant in Boston that makes plantain gnocchi. The bit talked about how plantains - like potatoes - have a high starch content and therefore work well for gnocchi. I wasn't quite up to trying to invent a plantain gnocchi recipe, but it did get me thinking about using plantains in egg-less recipes where you don't want everything, for lack of a better description, to completely fall apart.

I experimented with pan-frying these and baking them - both worked great. I think next time I might add some fresh summer corn kernels to the mix. You could also try adding some cooked quinoa or brown rice to make these more of a veggie burger and less of a croquette. Live on the edge!

Serves 6

(For the croquettes...)
1 can black beans
1 plantain (medium ripeness - yellow skin with black speckles)
1/2 c. red onion
1/4 c. cilantro
2 cloves garlic
Juice from half a lime
1/4 t. cumin
1/4 t. cayenne pepper
Salt & pepper
(For the Cilantro Crème...)
1/2 c. vegan sour cream
1/4 c. cilantro
Squeeze of fresh lime juice

(For the Salsa...)
1 vine tomato
1 avocado
2 T. red onion

Squeeze of lime
Salt & pepper

1. Using a food processor, whiz the garlic. Peel the plantain and cut it into chunks. Add to the food processor and whiz until the plantain is in tiny pieces.

2. Drain and rinse the beans. Roughly chop the red onion. Add the beans, red onion, cilantro, spices, lime juice, salt & pepper to the food processor and pulse 10 times until the mixture is just combined. Transfer to a bowl and rinse out the food processor to make the Cilantro Crème.

3. Use your hands to form patties with about 1/4 c. of the mixture. Either pan-fry over medium low heat until dark brown and crispy or bake at 350 for about 30 minutes, flipping halfway through.

4. While the croquettes are cooking, make the Cilantro Crème. Throw all ingredients into the food processor and whiz until completely smooth.

5. Make the salsa by gently mixing all ingredients. To serve, top each croquette with a generous amount of tomato-avocado salsa, Cilantro Crème, and fresh cilantro.


  1. Sarah, this looks soooo good!! Will definitely have to give this one a try one day! I can't believe you're due in 48 hours!! So exciting! Good luck!!!
    xo Marichelle

  2. These look wonderful! I've yet to use plantains but growing up our Jamaican friends used them alot and they were good! Oh and their Rum Punch!!!lol!

  3. That looks delicious (and vegetarian = even better). Cilantro creme sounds like the perfect topping.

  4. this looks so yummy! i've been wanting to make a black bean patty since i made the chickpea ones from veganomicon. i just made some beans yesterday, so maybe this is what they will become! i think i will make it with a cashew based cream with raw cashews, cilantro, lemon and salt/pepper. i think it would pair really well with the beans!

  5. I'm definately going to try this over the weekend! Wow, I'm soooo excited!

  6. mm..delicious. i would love to try some plantain gnocchi as well....

  7. I just made these today and they were fantastic. My partner loved them too (and my co-workers drooled). The only change I had to make was to whiz up the cilantro with the garlic; it was too bushy when added later, or the mixture had to be processed too long. But great idea!

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