Plantain recipes are famous in South India, and this banana stem stir fry recipe is just that. Packed with traditional Indian curry flavors, it can make for a great satisfying meal.
Ready to put that plantain stem to some good use? Scroll down and read on to discover how to do just that and make this stir fry from scratch.
Ingredients For the Recipe
You’ll need three sets of ingredients to make this stir fry. Don’t be overwhelmed- almost all of them are pantry staples.
For the Curry powder
- Coriander seeds: 1 tbsp
- Cumin seeds: ½ tbsp
- Fennel seeds: ½ tbsp
- Dry red chilies: 2-3
For the Banana Stem
- Banana stem (chopped): 1.5 cups
- Water: For boiling
For the Stir Fry
- Oil: 2 tbsps
- Mustard seeds: 1 tsp
- Cumin seeds: ½ tsp
- Curry leaves: 8-10
- Dry red chilies: 2-3
- Onions (Chopped): ¼ cup
- Prepared banana stem
- Prepared curry powder
- Turmeric powder: ½ tsp
- Salt: 1 teaspoon or as per taste
- Curd: 2 tbsps
- Gram flour (optional): 1 tbsp
- Coriander leaves (chopped): For garnish
How to Make the Banana Stem Stir Fry
Once you have all your ingredients ready, here’s what you need to do to make the stir fry.
Start by preparing the banana stem. Bring the water to a boil and add the chopped banana stem pieces. Cook them until they become a little mashed. Make sure to use the soft part of the stem and discard the outer layer and hard parts.
For the curry powder, dry roast all the whole spices and let them cool down to room temperature. Once they cool down, grind them into powder. Keep aside.
Next, heat oil in a pan. Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, curry leaves, and dry red chilies.
Add the onions next and saute them until they become translucent.
Add the boiled banana stem next and saute for 2 minutes.
Add all the powdered spices along with the prepared curry powder and salt and mix well. Let it cook for 1 minute.
Add the curd and the gram flour and mix well. Let it cook for another minute.
Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with sambar and steamed rice.
Frequently Asked Questions
While it is best to prepare this dish fresh, especially since banana stems tend to start turning dark (just like apples) when exposed to air or not cooked immediately.
That said, you can still chop up the stem and soak the pieces in water or diluted buttermilk and refrigerate it for upto a day. Doing this will keep the chopped stem from darkening, and you will be able to use it the next day.
You can also prepare the curry powder in a batch and store it in the refrigerator for weeks.
This banana stem stir fry is exactly what it sounds like- a simple dry curry made using fibrous banana stem chopped and mixed with different spices and seasonings. While it is best to keep the recipe simple, if you have a few extra minutes, you can always tweak it a bit and throw in some other veggies or ingredients of your choice.
Chopped carrots, bell peppers and raw bananas (plantains) taste the best.
Tips & Tricks to Make the Banana Stem Stir Fry
Making this stir fry dish may be easy, but having these little tips and hacks handy can really help you get those flavors spot on.
- Make sure you pick the banana stems carefully before using them for the recipe. Ideally, they need to be slightly dark, but not entirely black, and should have less of the fibrous outer rings.
- If the banana stems that you are working with have thick fibrous bands, you can chop them off using a knife, and try to use as much of the tender portions as you can.
- Grated coconut adds a nice bit of texture and depth of flavor to this dish. If you have it at hand, don’t forget to add it into the mix.
- If you have a few extra minutes, make a quick tempering of some oil, cumin seeds, urad dal and dried red chillies (if you don’t mind the heat) and pour the whole thing over the stir fry right before you serve.
- To make the dish easier to digest, you can also add a pinch of asafoetida into the tempering or into the stir fry along with the chopped plantain stems.
Serving Ideas & Suggestions
The banana stem stir fry is best served with some parathas or rotis, since it is a dry curry. You can enjoy it with a salad on the side, or with some dal and rice to make it a complete meal and a South Indian style fare.
Craving for some more Indian food? Here are a few good flavor loaded recipes that have Indian flavors that you need to try out.
Banana Stem Stir Fry
Ingredients For the Curry powder
- 1 tablespoon Coriander seeds
- ½ tablespoon Cumin seeds
- ½ tablespoon Fennel seeds
- 3 pcs Dry red chilies
Ingredients For the Banana Stem
- 1.5 cup Banana stem , (chopped)
- 1 cup Water
Ingredients For the Stir Fry
- 2 tablespoon Oil
- 1 teaspoon Mustard seeds
- ½ teaspoon Cumin seeds
- 10 pcs Curry leaves
- 3 pcs Dry red chilies
- ¼ cup Onions (Chopped)
- 1 bowl Prepared banana stem
- 1 bowl Prepared curry powder
- ½ teaspoon Turmeric powder
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- 2 tablespoon Curd
- 1 tablespoon Gram flour , (optional)
- 1 bunch Coriander leaves, (chopped)
- Start by preparing the banana stem. Bring the water to a boil and add the chopped banana stem pieces. Cook them until they become a little mashed. Make sure to use the soft part of the stem and discard the outer layer and hard parts.
- For the curry powder, dry roast all the whole spices and let them cool down to room temperature. Once they cooldown, grind them into powder. Keep aside.
- Next, heat oil in a pan. Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, curry leaves, and dry red chilies.
- Add the onions next and saute them until they become translucent.
- Add the boiled banana stem next and saute for 2 minutes.
- Add all the powdered spices along with the prepared curry powder and salt and mix well. Let it cook for 1 minute.
- Add the curd and the gram flour and mix well. Let it cook for another minute.
- Garnish with chopped coriander leaves and serve hot with sambar and steamed rice.