After moving to Astoria from a small culture-less New England town, plantains were one of my first international ingredients to learn about. Not to be eaten raw like a banana, they are quite a versatile and filling ingredient which you can fry, boil or bake. In their green unripened state plantains take on a more starchy, savory flavor you will find in a traditional Latin American recipe called tostones. As plantains ripen, they change from green to yellow to black and become quite sweet in the process. For preparing sweet plantains I recommend a mostly black color with a hint of yellow.
I guarantee that fried plantains in any form provide a more hearty use for dipping in different varieties of salsas and guacamole aside from the typical tortilla chips