plantain (plan-tin, -tn) noun
Also cooking bananas or cooking plantains. A fruit similar to a dessert banana that is larger in size with firmer flesh. Plantains are commonly used as a starchy vegetable in cooking and are frequently found in African and West Indian recipes in soups, stews, side dishes or desserts. They peel like a banana and have a similar creamy, yellow flesh, although plantains will often show a hint of pink as well.
When plantain skin is green, the flesh is very firm and suitable for frying either as is or as part of a fritter. When the skin blackens, the flesh is ripe and best used as a dessert – grilled, baked or fried. Plantains are eaten cooked more often than raw; if you want to sample one raw, make sure the skin is completely black.