Holistic Health Vegan

Red Red and Fried Plantain



Yes, you read it correctly. No, I am not referring to the song Red Red Wine by UB40. Although a glass of red wine will be lovely with this meal. Red Red was given the name because of it’s red color from the tomato sauce and palm oil. This is a dish that never disappoints. It is rich, savory and comforting bite after delicious bite. It is so yummy that you will want to sop up the remaining bits with your fingers. However, I urge you to exercise some control…LOL

I so enjoyed eating this as a child and I enjoy it more now that I am able to make it myself. It is wonderful to know that I can have Red Red on demand whenever the craving beckons. If you are interested in delighting yourself with this famous Ghanaian dish simply click here for the recipe.


1 16oz package of dry black eye peas (soak 24 hours in advance)

1 Large onion (sliced)

2 Roma tomatoes (sliced)

3 garlic cloves minced

1 veggie bouillon cube (unsalted)

1 8oz can of tomato sauce

*1 Tablespoon of liquid smoke

*1 Tablespoon of kelp flakes

1 teaspoon of West African red pepper (omit if you don’t like food too spicy)

1 Scotch Bonnet Pepper (Remove the seeds and cut in half)

1 inch piece of ginger (minced)

2 Teaspoons of sea salt (add more for desired taste)

1 Tablespoon of tomato paste

1/3 cup of West African red palm oil

2 Ripe plantains (yellow and black in color)

Canola/vegetable oil for frying the plantains.

To make the stew:

After the beans finished soaking overnight, rinse them off and pick out any loose skins floating in the water. Rinse again and put them in a pressure cooker for one hour. You can cook the beans on the stove top if you don’t have a pressure cooker but it will take longer to cook.

While the beans are cooking you can begin preparing the base for the Red Red by slicing the ingredients and getting them ready to saute when the beans are almost done.

In a large pot add the palm oil, onions, tomatoes, garlic, ginger and scotch bonnet halves. Allow them to saute on a medium heat/flame for 8-10 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking. When the peas are finished cooking, drain off the water but leave about a cup water from the cooked black eye peas in the pot. This will add to the flavor of the dish.

Transfer the cooked black eye peas into the pot with the sauteed onions and etc. Add the veggie bouillon cube, kelp flakes, liquid smoke, sea salt, tomato paste, and tomato sauce to the pot. Also add 8 ounces of water to the pot and allow everything to cook uncovered for 10-15 minutes. The added water will end up reducing giving the stew the desired consistency.

Note: The liquid smoke and kelp flakes help to add the flavor of smoked fish that is traditionally used in making Red Red.

For the fried plantain:

Make sure that the plantain is ripe. Sweet plantain is yellow in color but for added ripeness make sure that it is a little black in color. Kind of like a ripe banana.

Prepare your oil in the deep fryer if you have one. If not start warming your oil in a frying pan. You want to fill the pan half way with enough oil to cover the plantain. You will know it is ready when you hear the oil crackle a bit.

Remove the skin from the plantain and cut it on a diagonal angle. Drop the plantain slices in the bubbling oil and fry until golden brown on both sides. You should be able to pierce them easily with a fork. When they are finished frying put them on a plate covered with a paper towel to remove the excess oil.

Finally, you can add the Red Red and fried plantain to a plate. If you have it, garnish the red red with  Gari. Then enjoy!


Author: holistichealthvegan

I am a plus sized woman who set out on a quest to become healthier. It was on this journey to better health, that I discovered the joy of veganism through the teachings of Queen Afua, Nubia Sutton, and Breeze Harper, PhD. Join me as I recreate some of my pre-vegan favorites as well as the new vegan dishes I now enjoy.

9 thoughts on “Red Red and Fried Plantain

  1. Your post makes me happy because I love fried plantain. I tried them for the first time during my monthly trip in Colombia! Now I’ve to go back to Colombia and eat all of them! What does West Africa red pepper taste like? Is it similar to chile peppers? x

    • Aww thanks. I am glad that you like it. West African red pepper is very hot. Much much hotter than cayenne pepper. In fact I laugh at cayenne pepper. I think it is probably similar to ghost pepper.Only try it if you are feeling brave and love spicy food…LOL

  2. I enjoy friend plantains but have never tried to make them myself. I don’t have deep fryer, do you think it would work well just fried in a frying pan with a little oil?

  3. What a very delectable tasty dish! I love it all,…Yummy! 🙂

  4. Pingback: Spicy plantains (Ennai vazhakkai) | Strawberry Lentils

  5. I grew up eating this, it’s delicious. Sometimes I omit the palm oil and use vegetable oil. I then use plenty red paprika to get the red colour. Not as red as palm oil, but tasty too.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s