OKRA WITH MEAT AND RIPE PLANTAIN BALLS (A 19TH-CENTURY RECIPE)
Ingredients: » Lean pork meat: 1 kg
» Big ripe plantains: 2
» Fresh and tender okra: 800 g » Garlic: 8 or 10 cloves
» Big onion: 1
» Ground pepper
» The juice of two lemons
Preparation: Cut off the okra in crosswise slices, rinse them in water and add the lemon juice. If necessary and in order to remove the okra’s slimy mucilage, boil in clean water with the lemon juice or simply pour a little bit of white vinegar. Rinse again, shake them dry and put aside. Cut the unpeeled plantains in pieces and cook them in boiling water until they soften. Get them out of the water and peel them, then mash them and roll them into small balls (consider sprinkling some flour on your hands to make the plantain balls) and then fry them in boiling oil. Sauté the onion slices and the thinlycubed garlic (you should first sauté the onion and let it cook till it gets slightly purplish, then add the garlic). Then add the pork meat sliced in midsize cubes and sautéed in salt and pepper until it gets tender. Mix it all (the okra and the plantain balls). You can add a tablespoon of tomato paste and sprinkle some dry wine in it. Add a pinch of salt.