Banana chips are deep-fried and/or dried slices of bananas (fruits of the soft, sweet “dessert banana” variety). They can be covered with sugar or honey and have a sweet taste, or they can be fried in oil and spices and have a salty and/or spicy taste. Banana chips are commonly found in Indonesia (as kripik) and India. Variants of banana chips may be covered with chocolate instead. Banana chips are not to be confused with chifle, made from firmer, starchier fruit varieties of the genus Musa commercially called plantains or “cooking bananas”.
Usually, the chips are produced from under ripe bananas, of which slices are deep-fried in sunflower oil or coconut oil, which are then dried, and to which preservatives are added. These varieties of chips can be very oily, due to the deep-frying process.
Another form of fried banana chips, usually made in Kerala (India) and known locally as nenthra-kaaya oopperi, is fried in coconut oil. Both ripe and unripe bananas are used for this variant. Sometimes they are coated with masala or jaggery to form both spicy and sweet variants. It is an integral part of the traditional Kerala meal called sadya served during weddings and traditional festivals such as Onam.
Some varieties of banana chips can be produced using only food dehydration. Banana slices that are only dehydrated are not light brown and leathery, but rather are dark yellow and crunchy. They are very sweet and have an intense banana flavour. These are ideally made from bananas that are fully ripe.
Another kind is made by baking in an oven, although this process may not result in the same intense banana flavour.
Uses and Variations
- The chips are often part of muesli and nut mixes.
- Other chips, such as patacones, are salty.
- Similar chips called chifle are made from plantains, the family of fruit that bananas come from. (In tropical Latin American cultures, all bananas are considered plantains, but not all plantains are bananas.) Bananas are the small sweet fruits and plantains are the large fruits. In Kerala, under-ripe plantains are used to make salted and sweet chips. These deep-fried plantain chips are also quite popular in the southeastern part of Mexico. Specially in the state of Tabasco where the company Charricos produces and commercialises an assortment of sweet, salty and spicy plantain snacks.
Banana Chips Recipe
Quick Banana Chips
- 1 raw banana
- 3 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 cup oil
- salt, to taste
- Cut the banana into thin slices.
- Take a bowl with 2 cups of water then add turmeric powder into water mix it well.
- Put the banana pieces into turmeric water, leave soaking for 5 minutes
- Drain well and place pieces on tea towel, dry well.
- Deep fry the banana pieces in hot oil. Once they half cooked then pour salt water spoon by spoon.
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Video – How to make Quick Banana Chips