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Pisang Goreng - Indonesian Fried Banana
The key to crispy pisang goreng lies in the batter. Learn the secret to the perfect batter to recreate this beloved Indonesian fried bananas in your home.
It starts to feel like autumn in Oregon, especially with all the rains we’ve been having almost non-stop for the whole week! My cravings for comfort food grows in exponential proportion, and the saba bananas on my countertop that were intended for banana bread seemed to whisper to me, “turn us into pisang goreng …”
Needless to say, the battle of pisang goreng vs. banana bread didn’t last long, and after a little bit of mixing and deep-frying, I happily stuffed my face with as much pisang goreng as my stomach could handle! After I snapped some photos to share, of course. I’m not THAT barbaric!
What is pisang goreng?
Pisang goreng is basically bananas coated with batter and deep-fried in hot oil. Once deep-fried, the batter turns crispy, while the banana is of course, sweet and tender.
It sounds so easy, because it is, and yet this humble pisang goreng is a masterpiece despite its simplicity. How else can you explain the need for at least one gorengan (deep-fried snacks, bananas are always the star) seller in every street corner across Indonesia, and none of them seems to be lacking for hungry customers?
Honestly, when I was still in Indonesia, there is almost no incentive to learn to make a proper pisang goreng. Whenever the cravings hit, I simply need to step out from the comfort of my home and walk to the nearest gorengan seller. It would be a surprise if anyone needs more than a 15-minutes walk to spot one of these sellers.
This all changes once you live away from Indonesia for a while, and I am sure many of you have pisang goreng cravings that simply must be quenched! So read on, my dear readers. :)
Which bananas should I use to make pisang goreng?
There are several varieties of bananas (and plantains) that are suitable to prepare pisang goreng. The more popular ones include:
- raja/radja bananas (Indonesian: pisang raja)
- saba bananas (Indonesian: pisang kepok)
- plantains (Indonesian: pisang tanduk)
So far, I have only seen saba bananas and plantains in the US. Your best bet to score some saba bananas is through your local Asian market. Plantains are more readily available even in regular stores.
Personally, I prefer raja bananas > saba bananas > plantains, but since I haven’t been able to find any raja bananas yet, I have been making pisang goreng with saba bananas.
Regardless of the variety, it is imperative that you must wait until the bananas/plantains are ripe. This means the skins should be yellow and have dark spots. Be patient and wait for a few days if your bananas/plantains are still green.
The all-important batter for crispy pisang goreng
The secret to the crispiest pisang goreng lies in the batter. After many frustrating trials and errors, I am quite happy with this incarnation.
THIS is the batter that finally can make my pisang goreng stays crispy for at least 1 hour, I think it is safe to say they should stay crispy for up to 2 hours!
Unless you somehow need your pisang goreng to stay crispy for more than 2 hours, but why would anyone need that?
Pisang goreng is like french fries, they taste amazing while piping hot, not so when it’s cold and uh, soggy. So ideally, one should consume pisang goreng under 30 minutes, exactly like french fries, or you know, other deep-fried food in general.
My crispy pisang goreng batter
You will need the following ingredients to make the pisang goreng batter:
- rice flour
- baking powder
- baking soda
- turmeric powder (optional)
Simply follow my recipe, and I am quite confident your pisang goreng cravings will be cured. Enjoy!
Pisang Goreng - Indonesian Fried Banana
- 8 ripe saba bananas (or 4 ripe plantains, cut each plantain into 2 to get 8 pieces total)
- oil for deep frying
- Pisang goreng batter
- 100 gram rice flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoon sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon turmeric powder (optional)
- 1/2 cup water
- Heat enough oil in a pot for deep frying, make sure there are at least 2 inches of oil, preferably 3 inches.
- Meanwhile, peel all the bananas. Optionally, make three slits along its length, but keep the bottom 1 inch intact, so the bananas can be opened up like a fan.
- Whisk together all pisang goreng batter in a mixing bowl.
- Once the oil is hot, scoop 1 tablespoon of hot oil and add to the batter, whisk again. (*)
- Coat the bananas with batter and deep-fry until golden brown and crispy, about 3-4 minutes. At around 2 minutes into frying, drop batter in drips into the hot oil to make plenty of batter droplets, then quickly coat the bananas with the resulting crispy bits. This creates an additional layer to ensure your resulting pisang goreng stays crispy for longer.
- Remove bananas and drain on a wire rack to remove excess oil. Pisang goreng is best when served immediately.
- (*) If you have bamboo chopsticks, you can tell that the oil is ready once there are bubbles around a bamboo chopstick that are lowered in the hot oil.
Lizet Bowen says:
So looking forward to trying your recipe and getting that crispy crust!
I couldn't get enough of these when I was in Indonesia, and love that I finally get to make these at home... they're amazing. Thank you for the recipe!
Me too, Candice. I always have plenty of pisang goreng whenever I have the chance to fly home to Indonesia. :)
Fried bananas?! Yum!! Thanks for sharing a dish I've never heard of. How interesting!
Amazing recipe! The batter was so crispy and crunchy. Definitely making this again!
Glad you love the recipe, Jamie. I was jumping up and down and was so happy (I'm so sorry, my poor downstair neighbors) when I finally nailed the recipe. :)
I love that these are made with rice flour. That makes them gluten-free. I didn't know there were so many different kinds of bananas. What a delicious way to make them.
There are indeed so many different varieties of bananas in Indonesia, and the three I mentioned are just the ones we use for pisang goreng. We have so many more varieties! Interestingly when I was just a child, we didn't have regular US cavendish bananas. It's only something that was introduced sometime around my high school years. :)
Hello Anita, thanks a lot for this recipe! I have been looking for pisang goreng recipe for quite some time. Just a quick question, what oil do you usually use to deep fry the bananas or other deep-fried foods? Thanks again!
Pink, I usually use canola oil for deep frying. But if you are in Asia, it might be easier to use peanut oil. Peanut oil is actually better than canola because it has a higher smoke point compared to canola. :)
Michelle Alston says:
Oh, these look and sound delicious Anita! I can't wait to try these!
The Book of Food says:
They're higly addictive, I love them!
Hi Anita! What do you mean by "drop the batter in drips" 2 minutes into frying? So excited to do this recipe!
Um... the purpose is basically to create batter droplets so they form tiny small bubbles/balls once hit the hot oil, which we then use to coat the fried bananas with. This step is totally optional, but a lot of pisang goreng sellers do this since the pisang goreng looks more fun like this. And don't worry if it may take a lot of practice to get the hang of it, I promise the pisang goreng will taste fine even without this step. :)
Did this technique and it changed my life!! Thank you :)
I'm happy you gave it a try, Rahel. Glad you love the new technique to prepare pisang goreng. :)
First time making these and it was so easy! They turned out delicious.
I always see these are the shops and now I'm excited to know that I can make it at home! Thanks for sharing! I'm a big fan of your recipes!
Sounds like such a unique recipe. I never tried frying bananas before. I so want to try out this!
Sara Welch says:
I've never heard of fried bananas! I bet these taste perfectly sweet and crispy! Excited to try these out!
This sounds like such a treat! Can't wait to try it soon.
Fried bananas are so surprisingly good! Loved them and how easy they were to make!
Where have these been all my life?! These are our new favorite snack - so delicious!
I've never had fried bananas this way before. It looks and sounds delicious! I'm making these right away.
Love these cute bananas! I am gonna try to make them: I will add turmeric powder for sure. Thanks for your great and easy to follow recipes:)
Kait | Slumber & Scones says:
These look so tasty and indulgent! I love anything fried, and I'm excited to try these bananas.
Damn good ......
Hi. Love goreng pisang so much! Coming from Singapore and living in the States now, this is a definite must have recipe. I tried but my bananas just fell out of the crisps. You have any idea what may have been the problem? Thanks!
Hi Terence, at step 5, instead of waiting for 2 minutes before adding the additional batter, try adding the additional batter after 1 minute, or even 30 seconds. After several trials, hopefully you will get the hang of it. :)
Lany Susanto says:
R K says:
Hi any possibility using air fryer with this recipe?
Hi RK, I don't own an air fryer, but I think it should be doable with a setting of 180 Celsius (350 Fahrenheit) for 5 minutes. You may want to reduce the water from 1/2 cup to 1/4-1/3 cup so the batter is thicker. Once you dip the bananas in the batter, you may want to coat with bread crumb so they would be easier to handle and less messy for the air-fryer to handle.
Would it work with Cavendish banana that's maybe a little more on the firm side? Or would it change the flavor completely? Also, if I want to keep the temperature level, would it be 350 F? Thanks in advance! I've been a fan of your recipes. Tried others and worked wonders :)
Hi Magda, it should work with firm Cavendish bananas. I usually keep the oil around 340F, but I'm guessing 350F should work too if that's easier for you. :)
I followed your recipe to the "t" and my goreng pisang turned out perfectly! My husband and kid enjoyed it very much too. My daughter loved all the garing-garing bits, haha!
Mable L says:
I found the batter a bit too thick, is it meant to be that way? My first time making and I miss it so much! Tastes great, just the hate seem quite thick - not sure if I did something wrong.
Hi Mable, thanks for trying out the recipe. I find the batter thickness to be perfectly fine and this has always a favorite snack in my family. But if you prefer a thinner batter, you can always add more water to thin it out to suit your preference.
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