Cuban Dinner, Vegetarian Style

There is a restaurant called Cabana Nuevo Latina in Queens, NY and in DelRay Beach, FL.  I’ve been to both and they never fail to impress me with their beautiful and delicious dishes.  In NY a few years ago I had a version of barbecue chicken that knocked my socks off but they did not feature it on the menu in FL. The Pollo Jamaiquina is a half chicken marinated in caribbean spices and hot peppers, basted with jerk barbeque sauce and grilled over an oak fire.  Amazing.

A good replacement at the DelRay location is the Coco Cabana–also amazing–they describe it as “our signature coconut milk and habanero-curry reduction with yuca, calabaza, yautia, broccoli, carrots, spinach, Peruvian purple potatoes.”

No matter what you get, the plantains, beans, and sauteed spinach are always great accompaniments.  In an effort to revisit my meals at Cabana Neuvo Latino, I made plantains, black beans, and sauteed spinach served with avocado and siracha chili sauce.  While it wasn’t the Cabana, it did the trick!

For the beans, I sauteed some diced onions and garlic with small chunks of carrot then added beans and simmered for a while.  For the plantains, I sliced them lengthwise and sauteed in a small amount (1 tsp or so) or oil for about 15 minutes, flipping once.  I think plantains taste best fried in more oil but I wanted to keep it healthy and they turned out just fine albeit a bit starchier than fried plantains.  Serve with some quick sauteed spinach, sliced avocado, and hot sauce.

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