Going Bananas for Pisang Goreng

Pisang Goreng was introduced in 1511 by the Portuguese who loved their banana fritters as a breakfast staple. Since then it has became one of Indonesia’s best-loved snacks!

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Pisang Goreng is a snack food mostly found throughout Indonesia (apart from Sumatra), Brunei, and Malaysia. The Philippines have a similar equally-tasty version called Ginanggang, which is coated in sugar before being stuck on wooden skewers. For the real Indonesian pisang goreng, however, it would be consumed as a snack in the morning and afternoon and sold by street vendors, known as warungs. The banana is battered and then deep fried, after which most street vendors will then sell it to you as it comes.

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I think pisang goreng was my first ever Indonesian snack, and I have had a strong emotional connection to it ever since. I have also tried Panada, which is a pastry stuffed with tuna, and this was delicious. Other amazing snacks I have purchased from warungs across Indonesia have included kerak telor, plenty of nasi goreng, ayam penyet, more sate than can be mentioned, a few bakpao, plus those immaculately circular balls of onde-onde.

Pisang Goreng is often eaten for dessert with ice cream
Pisang Goreng is often eaten for dessert with ice cream

When I am not travelling around Asia, and end up stuck in miserable London, I try to search for some pisang goreng locally, although it is never the same taste or texture. There are casual dining outlets that offer it with ice cream (sometimes even with the ice cream covered over the fried bananas – a total no no), cheese, jam, or chocolate, but for genuine fried bananas Indonesia is where it’s at – and thankfully there, the traditional snack form is still much more prevalent.

Here’s a guide on how to make your own Pisang Goreng at home!

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21 thoughts on “Going Bananas for Pisang Goreng

      1. Hahaha, 😀 there’re many choice of Gorengan/snacks like Pisang Goreng, such as Ote-ote, Menjes (Tempe), Singkong Keju hehehe

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  1. There’s actually two versions of it: the dry you mentioned and a moist one, I can’t comment on the dry as I’ve never actually tried it 😉 The moist one though, is really a gem. It has really deep flavors; much sweeter and more banana-ey than pisang goreng or any other banana concoction I’ve tasted for that matter. To top it off, they usually serve it with grated cheese or chocolate sprinkles. I’ve only tried it in Jakarta though I’ve heard that they also serve it Bandung

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  2. Actually those street vendors use different type of banana, that you can’t find it sold as a normal banana elsewhere in the world. This type of banana gives you the unique texture that make the banana not too moist and mushy as when you fried the normal banana (the one you normally found and imported to Europe).

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  3. I agree with Nin’s comment, the secret is the type of banana. They sell it in some “toko” (Indonesian shops) in the Netherlands but not for nothing – it’s quite expensive. Maybe they are available in UK Asian shops..The type of the banana for fried banana in Indonesia are Pisang Raja and Pisang Kepok..

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  4. Although Pisang Sale (Smoked banana) can be found in some groceries all over Indonesia, but it originally comes from Aceh. The flavour may not be to everyone’s taste. Some people described the taste as ‘chewing on a wet cigar’

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