We call it “Pinakru” in Bicol. In Tagalog it’s called Ginataang Saging na Saba bananas. It’s basically cooking mid-ripe to ripe, Saba bananas in coconut milk and served either as dessert or breakfast. Some add sugar on it, others prefer to serve it as is. A very simple dish to make. Simply stew sliced Saba bananas in whichever shape you prefer it to be, then boil it in coconut milk and sugar or salt alone. Since Saba bananas are not always available in the USA or abroad, Filipinos learned to use Mexican Plantain as a substitute. Let’s try Cathy’s sweet Pinakru(Ginataang Saging na Saba) or Coconut Stewed Bananas, and enjoy!

Ingredients: 4-6 servings

10-12 mid-ripe Saba bananas(plantains as substitute)
3 cups coconut milk
2 tbsp. white sugar
2-3 cups of water
Salt to taste

Cooking Procedure:

  1. Skin off bananas and slice them into elongated strips. Put them into a deep skillet, and add coconut milk.
  2. Place pan on a heated stove and let Ginataang Saging start to boil for 3-5 minutes.
  3. While Pinakru is boiling, stir mixture constantly. This will allow a smooth, coconut milk texture. close the lid and let it simmer for 3 minutes.
  4. As it simmers, keep stirring, then add sugar and a pinch of salt to taste. Stir it again for another 2-3 minutes, until bananas are cooked and coconut milk is thickened.
  5. Turn off the heat, transfer sweet Ginataang Saging(Coconut Stewed Bananas) na Saba into a serving bowl, serve hot for breakfast or snack. Enjoy!

Tip: For better tasting Pinakru or sweet Ginataang Saging na Saba, use middle-ripe banana or those bananas that are in the midst of its ripening process. Overripe, not too much, but it’s your choice. If you’re using unripe ones, you’re going to need more sugar with it, but you can use some non-sugar sweeteners, if desired. Unripe Plantains are not advisable.