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El bacan oriental

    6 bananas, fruits or green plantains
    Bitter orange juice
    Juice of a lime
    20 cloves of garlic
    200g. ground pork
    1 egg
    30g. butter or lard
    4 banana leaves
    Salt and pepper to taste

Bacán is a traditional Cuban dish. It has a great resemblance to the corn tamal, it is true, but the bacán made from green plantains, and very typical of Cuban rural cuisine, is almost exclusive to the eastern region, in particular from Santiago de Cuba to Baracoa .
The word bacán is also a Cubanism used particularly in the Camagüey region as a synonym for good or good. I still remember that in my old land this very Creole expression was often heard: "compay, eso ta'bacán!", to express that something was really very good.
Next, we are going to prepare some good oriental bacans.

Method of preparation:
Cut the banana leaves into 6" x 8" rectangles and then blanch them, i.e. soften them in hot water, for 2 to 3 minutes.
Prepare a saucepan with water and salt on the stove so that it is hot enough when the preparation of the bacans is finished.
Peel the bananas and store them in salted water and lime juice so that they do not turn black.
Grate the bananas until you have 3 cups of pulp.
Crush the garlic with salt and pepper. Add the bitter orange juice. It has a kind of mojo.
Mix this mojo then with the banana pulp, butter and beaten egg.
Grease the banana leaf pieces. Put a little of the previous preparation in the center, with a tablespoon of previously sealed minced meat.
Cover the minced meat with a little more of the banana mixture, wrap everything in the banana leaves, like a tamale, and tie with string.
Cook in boiling water for an hour.
Unwrap and serve hot with sautéed onions, vegetable salad or crispy pork rinds.
Believe me, this dish, so full of Cubanness, is very bacán.
Enjoy your meal and see you soon when you return to Cuba.
(Photos: Internet)

El bacan oriental
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