Firehouse Pastele Stew

User rating: (3)

Featured in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser on August 19, 2015.
Recipe compliments of the Honolulu firefighters.



Firehouse Pastele Stew

  • 4 pounds pork butt, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 2 (1/3 ounce packages) achuete (annatto powder; available in Asian section)
  • 2 cans (15 ounces each) low-sodium diced tomatoes
  • 1 can (6 ounces) no-salt tomato paste
  • 2 cans (6 ounces each) black whole pitted olives, drained
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 medium bell peppers, diced
  • 2 bunches cilantro, chopped
  • 1 bunches green onions, chopped

Banana dumplings:

  • Salt for boiling
  • 1 large very green banana (plantain banana), peeled and finely grated
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon chili oil or to taste (available in Asian section)



  1. In a large pot, add pork butt and simmer over medium heat.
  2. Add garlic and onions; stir until all natural juices come out.
  3. Season with salt, pepper, and achuete.
  4. Stir in diced tomatoes, tomato paste, olives, bay leaves, and bell peppers; simmer for 45 minutes or until pork is soft.
  5. Add cilantro and green onions: simmer for another 15 minutes.

Banana dumplings:

  1. In a large pot of water, add salt to taste and boil.
  2. In a large bowl, mix banana with oils.
  3. Press banana mixture into olive-size balls then drop into boiling water until dumplings float.
  4. Remove from water and drain.
  5. Cool for 20 minutes; fold into stew to serve.

Makes 10 servings.

Approximate Nutrient Analysis per serving (not including salt in dumpling water):
430 calories, 23 g fat, 7 g saturated fat, 110 mg cholesterol, 500 mg sodium, 22 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 11 g sugar, 36 g protein


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Soo good! We're living in Japan, so hard to find plantains. I just skipped the dumpling part of recipe altogether b/c of that. But, still sooo yummy! Thank you for posting recipe!

by MelP on 6/8/2022

Island girl living in Minnesota and this is a winner for me and my family! Great and easy to make!!

by Dawn on 10/24/2021

Super yummy, can’t stop eating this! Was able to find the green cooking banana (plantain) at Whole Foods. If you follow the recipe exactly, you’ll need to add salt at the end. Otherwise it’s a little bland.

by ANONYMOUS on 1/6/2021