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….Well, now that you have that song stuck in your head, you must have figured out what this post is going to be about! Bananas!
What do you do if you discover bananas that you had forgotten you bought two weeks ago? Well, here are some ways to use these bananas, provided they aren’t spoiled and have mold growing over them… or flies making homes of them.
Now, if you want to use them for later, you can just shove them in the freezer. The banana peel will turn completely black. However, the bananas will still be usable.
1) Banana Smoothies
This requires no skill whatsoever and only really needs a blender or food processor. Via a relative, I had access to a small blender, which was only big enough to make a cup or so of smoothie at a time. It was a Bella Cucina Blender, and I didn’t put ice into the smoothie because I was not sure if the blades would break.
Smoothies are as simple as just dumping banana slices and cold water into the blender and mixing it! Add some slices of strawberry, and voila, you have banana and strawberry smoothie!
Banana Smoothie Ingredients:
- Sliced banana pieces
- Sliced other fruit pieces (Optional) (Raspberries, blueberries, cranberries, and other berries their size are small enough that they do not need to be cut.)
- Cold water (If you have ice, then it can just be room temperature water). If you are not lactose intolerant, you can add milk instead of water.
- Ice (Optional)
- Yogurt (Optional – I find that adding yogurt brings out the flavor of the smoothie more.)
- Slice your fruits and ingredients. If you are using ice, make sure your blender/food processor can break the ice without breaking down.
- Depending on how thick you want you smoothie, you will vary the amount of ingredients. If you want a more water-y smoothie, put less fruit in and more water… or just add more water compared to the fruit. The more fruit there is, the thicker the smoothie becomes. Howeve,r you can’t have the smoothie be too thick. If you don’t put enough water, your blender may stall because it gets too dense to mix the ingredients.
- Put the ingredients into the blender.
- Turn on the blender/mixer and let it run until the smoothie seems alright. With the Bella blender, I blended in increments of 30 seconds. It was done by 1 minute. Of course, this time will vary depending on the mixer you use and the amount of ingredients you put in.
2) Banana Bread
There are plenty of banana bread recipes out there. I have done chocolate chip cranberry banana bread, chocolate chip banana bread, plain old banana bread, peppermint chocolate chip banana bread.., which I modified due to lack of ingredients. However, when I previously made banana bread, I did not have an over excess of 7 bananas to get rid of.
So, I decided to get creative, and I ended up with Family Spice’s Chocolate Almond Banana Bread with a few modifications because I did not have the same ingredients, and I was too lazy to go out and buy the ingredients I did not have. Note that if you use Family Spice’s original recipe, it is most likely healthier than what I’ve come up with.
- 3/4 cup all purpose flour (bread flour might work better)
- 6 packs of hot cocoa powder(I used Swiss Miss, but any other cocoa mix works…. or you can also melt a whole lot of Hershey bars)
- 1 tsp baking soda
- A dash of salt
- 1 cup over-ripe bananas, mashed (I mashed about 3 whole bananas)
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips
- Almond pieces (Almond slices look nicer, but I didn’t have sliced almonds, so I chopped them into pieces with a large knife)
- Preheat oven to 350ºF.
- Mix all the wet ingredients (bananas, water,olive oil, egg, vanilla extract). I did not have an electric mixer or whisk, so I just used a straight wooden turner. )
- Slowly add the dry ingredients a little bit at a time to the mix. Add sugar, baking soda, flour, cocoa powder, almond, salt. (Having a mixer will make combining the dry and wet ingredients faster and easier.)
- Reserve some chocolate chips and dump the rest into the batter.
- If you don’t have a nonstick pan, apply non-stick spray to a 9″ x 5″ loaf pan. I just lined the inside of the pan with aluminum foil. Parchment paper may be better.
- Pour batter inside.
- Top with reserved chocolate chips.
- Bake bread in oven for about 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the bread comes out clean.
- Let the bread rest in the pan for 10 minutes, then turn out onto a cooling rack to cool completely, about 1 hour.
3) Banana Cupcakes and Cookies!
Of course, if bread is possible then cookies and cupcakes are possible too! Below are banana pumpkin cupcakes. Unfortunately, I can’t seem to locate the recipe I used, but if I find it, I will upload the recipe.
Chiquita actually has banana recipes for all stages of a banana’s life. Click the blue box with the wheel of bananas and then select your stage of banana!
Read about more banana bread recipes in December’s blog post.