[Photographs: Max Falkowitz]

Fried sweet plantains are common enough, but at Cevicheria El Rey in Elmhurst they're exceptionally sweet. The portion of maduros is generous for the $3 price tag, and the plantains are sweet to the point of juicy. See those edges? They're almost lacy, with a flavor that borders on caramel.


If this sounds like dessert more than a side dish, it's because you need something sweet to handle the Leche de Pantera ($13), El Rey's signature ceviche of shrimp, crab legs, and octopus in an inky sauce of "extracted seafood juice" jolted with citrus. That inky black "panther's milk" doesn't mess around; maduros soften the blow.

Cevicheria El Rey

85-16 Roosevelt Avenue, New York, NY 11373 (map)

About the author: Max Falkowitz is the editor of Serious Eats: New York. You can follow him on Twitter at @maxfalkowitz.

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