The crunchiness of the plantains plus the richness of the peanut sauce, combined with the delicate flavor and texture of shrimp, makes this dish a true taste experience.
A lot of people with high cholesterol avoid eating shrimp as they do contain a good amount of cholesterol (about 180 mg per 3 oz. serving). However, shrimp can be part of a heart healthy diet as they are very low in fat, especially saturated fat, the type of fat that is more directly linked to the increase of LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol and decrease in HDL or ‘good’ blood cholesterol. In addition, shrimp are a good source of protein and Omega-3 fatty acids.
Fresh shrimp are rather rare to find, especially if you live far from their natural source. Thus, frozen shrimp can be an alternative. Always defrost shrimp in the refrigerator. If this is not possible, place shrimp under cold running water until they defrost. Never cook shrimp that are still partially or fully frozen in order to reduce the risk of foodborne illness.
Shred the plantains, season with garlic powder and freshly ground pepper. Coat a 12-mini muffin tin with cooking spray. Cover the bottom and sides of the tin with the plantain (don’t put too much for a crispier layer). Bake for 30 minutes or until edges are crispy and golden brown, then set aside to cool.
Sauté the onion for 3-4 minutes in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook for an additional minute. Add the tomatoes, coconut milk, peanut butter, vegetable broth, herbs and spices. Continue to cook until sauce has thickened (6-8 minutes approximately).
Add shrimp and cook until opaque and pink, 2-3 minutes.
Spoon in some of the sauce into each plantain basket. Place shrimp on top and garnish with fresh cilantro.