Recipe Thursday: Obsessed with Bananas

It may be because I can’t really get bananas right now, and when I do, I specifically get organic because the certification helps assess the Cavendish banana tree health and plantation soil health, which is in detrimental decline (the Cavendish being the kind that Americans typically eat, though there are many other worldwide kinds, and even cultivars of Cavendish – but undergoing some sort of fungal pathogen blight, and I get organic because other bananas aren’t sprayed but are wrapped in chemical bags to deter friends and artificially ripen – anything we do to lessen monocropping/monoculture of our food and soil, the better). Our friend apparently has a banana tree growing in his yard here in Maine which excites me greatly! I wish that banana tree very much luck and growth and future bananas! It is an amazing rhizomatic plant that grows essentially as layers of leaves with a shooting flower stalk that could (unlikely here in Maine unless inside, in a greenhouse) bloom and then fruit into a little bunch of bananas that look (to many of our ignorant eyes) upside down!

Bananas are a tricky bit for me, though. I am particular about its stage of texture – I prefer just ripe (still firm with bright flavor) but I can deal with them ripe (mostly because I feel they are good for me so I just get them into my body). Eventually, one escapes the morning routine and gets past its prime. You can freeze them (cut into thick rounds, freeze on tray before bagging up – use later for banana bread or desserts or smoothies), and even if they are dark – their flavor and nutritional content are the same, they have just reacted to the air (not as attractive but still usable!).

We used to go on dates (obviously before parenting – ha! Parents who still get to go on dates are blessed, you have no idea how blessed you are…) just for dessert. Way back when in our Burlington days, we would go out to find the best desserts in town (and it was such a good food town, yet still up and coming…). One of them that we remember fondly was a Mexican restaurant on lower Church St (Cactus Cafe, I think) with Talavera tiles and delicious food. And this dessert pleased us so much, we started making a version of it at home.

This other recipe I’m throwing in because I keep coming across it (from ‘fit foodie’), and I want to make it – I’m having banana cravings. And if we do lose the Cavendish, I think these recipes will do just fine with other bananas. Here’s to cravings!

Bananas (mmm) rollson
Serves 4

  • 4 ripe to really ripe Bananas, peeled and cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 can whole Coconut Milk (shake well or open and stir vigorously, working the cream back into the milk before using)
  • 2 tsp ground Ginger
  • 3 Tbsp Dark Brown Sugar (or 2 Tbsp Cane Sugar and 1 Tbsp Molasses
  • 1 ‘brick’ Graham Crackers (a full stack of grahams, or to taste)
  • Vanilla Ice Cream/Frozen Yogurt/Frozen Coconut Milk, etc.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place Bananas in small casserole and cover with Coconut Milk, sprinkle with Ginger and Brown Sugar. Bake until bubbly and thick (about 20-25min). Serve over Graham Crackers and/or Vanilla Ice Cream.

Peanut Butter/ Chocolate Chip/Banana Nice Cream
Serves 6ish

  • 4 cups of frozen Banana slices (lay on parchment covered tray and place in freezer, then bag if left over or for later)
  • 1/4 all natural Peanut Butter (or Sunflower, Almond, Cashew, etc)
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup unsweetened Almond Milk (or other happy creamy product, Oat, Soy, Dairy, Nut, etc)
  • 1/3 cup mini Chocolate (or Carob) Chips, optional

Place frozen banana slices, peanut butter, and 1/2 cup almond milk into a food processor or high-speed blender. Blend on high until a smooth consistency has formed. If things are too thick, add a little bit more almond milk.

Add in mini chocolate chips and pulse to combine.

Option to eat immediately for a “soft-serve-like” consistency or to transfer into a parchment-lined bread pan to freeze for a more “ice cream-like” consistency. Freeze for about 2 hours. If you freeze for longer, it will become solid and hard to scoop, so you will need to thaw!

Serve with more chocolate chips and a drizzle of peanut butter and honey, if feeling decadent.

Published by Rachael M Rollson

creative life-learner

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