A Puerto Rican classic, made with seasoned ground beef enveloped in a masa of green bananas and yautía.
by: Carolina Ginorio | @caroginorio_pr
Alcapurrias are street food of the highest order—typically enjoyed by people who’ve spent all day at the beach and served on the side of the road. This popular Puerto Rican fritura is made from a masa of plantains and yautía filled with ground beef and fried to crispy perfection. Usually, they’re about 4 inches long, but in Puerto Rico, you’ll find some places that will make them up to 2 feet long as a tourist attraction.
For this recipe, we’re sticking to the standard, more manageable size. At home, I use wax paper to form the iconic half-moon shape for my alcapurria, but back on the island, people often use a banana leaf or grape leaf they picked that morning from the beach. I’ve also used a classic beef picadillo filling for this recipe, but you can find them filled with seafood, pernil, or many other fillings. Feel free to get creative with your favorite fillings. I like to enjoy my alcapurria with a little bit of hot sauce, but mayoketchup is always a welcome addition — and they’re perfectly delicious all on their own! Whichever way you choose to make them, I hope they bring you a little taste of Puerto Rico.
A Puerto Rican classic, made with seasoned beef enveloped in a masa of green bananas and yautía.
5 green bananas
1 lb yautía
2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp vinegar
1 tbsp achiote oil
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp sofrito
½ white onion, chopped
1 lb ground beef
½ tbsp adobo
½ tbsp sazón
1 tsp oregano
Sea salt to taste
Black pepper to taste
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 garlic clove, minced
1 tbsp pimiento morrón, chopped
For the Masa
For the picadillo filling
Peel the green bananas and cut them into 1 inch pieces. Place the bananas in a bowl with cold water and salt.
Peel and cut the yautía and rinse it.
In a blender place the yautía, the bananas, 2 tbsp of salt, the achiote oil and the vinegar. Blend to create a masa, set aside.
In a pan, add olive oil, sofrito, and chopped onion. Cook until the onion is translucent, then add in minced garlic.
Add the ground beef and season it with adobo, sazón, oregano, salt, and pepper.
Sauté the ground beef until it browns. Stir in the tomato paste and pimientos.
After cooking through, let the meat cool on the pan for a few minutes.
Cut a square piece of wax paper and add a big spoonful of masa onto it. Flatten it a little bit creating space for the ground beef.
Add ground beef to the center and then top with half a spoonful of more masa to cover the meat. Fold the paper creating sort of a half moon shape.
Heat frying oil in a pot to 375° F. Fry the Alcapurrias until golden brown. After frying, drain excess oil on a paper towel and serve warm. Enjoy!