WIKI

Banana

Banana

Bananas are thought to have originated in Malaysia around 4,000 years ago, and today they are a staple food for millions of people around the globe. Technically they are a berry, and grow in bunches on trees. Today, bananas purchased in supermarkets around the globe are nearly identical, as most commercial banana plants are a clone of a single plant.

Seasonality

Year-Round

Selection & Storage

Look for bananas which are firm, bright, and free from bruises. They are perfectly ripe when they are bright yellow specked with brown.

If you want to ripen them faster, place them in a brown bag, so ethylene gas will build up causing them to ripen faster.

Never place bananas in the fridge because they are too sensitive to temperatures below 55 °F.

Clever Uses

Cut up and freeze ripe bananas, throw them in the food processor and you’ve got no-guilt banana ice cream. We won’t tell if you add chocolate and peanut butter, too!

Did you forget about a bunch? Freeze bananas that have gone fully brown for a future batch of banana bread.

To brighten dull skin, mash one banana with one tablespoon each of lemon juice and honey. Apply to clean skin and let dry for 15 minutes. Then rinse and smile at your glowing skin!

Food Science

Why do frozen bananas turn into dreamy soft serve in the food processor? It’s all thanks to pectin, a fiber found in plants. While processing, the pectin in bananas binds to itself, and these larger molecules make it harder for ice crystals to form, making the substance creamier.

The special combo of pectin, sugar content, and fiber needed for banana soft serve exists in mangoes too, so freeze ‘em and give them a whirl. And the same substance is responsible for your super creamy cauliflower soup.

Cooking Tips

Make sure you are cooking with a truly ripe banana for better flavor and texture, it should have some brown spots on it! And for baking, overripe bananas will give you sweeter results.

Freezing a banana for smoothies or ice cream? Peel ripe bananas and chop into chunks before placing on a tray in the freezer. Once fully frozen place in a plastic bag.

Peel a banana by pinching the end opposite from the stem to prevent bruising the banana.

Make banana chips at home! Slice thinly and place on a cookie sheet. Brush with a lemon juice/water mix and bake at 250 degrees for about 90 min or until crispy.

Health Benefits

Bananas soothe your sore muscles with their combination of potassium, magnesium, and sodium, plus their carbohydrate content makes them a great post-workout snack.

Knowing bananas are great for muscles, it should come as no surprise that they are great for your heart, as potassium helps to regulate and maintain a normal heartbeat.

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