Banana Recipes

For easy peeling, green bananas are boiled, steamed, or baked until they are soft, and then peeled. Ripe cooking bananas boiled with coconut syrup make a tasty sweet dish. A traditional chiefly drink in some Pacific countries is prepared by pounding ripe eating bananas and mixing them with lemon-leaf-scented coconut cream. Ripe eating bananas, mashed and cooked with starch, make a cake with a jelly-like texture.

To prepare banana flowers, remove the tough outer layers. Slice thinly into sections as an onion is sliced. Wash in salty water, kneading to wash out all of the sap. Rinse in fresh water and use in salads, soups, or other dishes.

To prepare dried bananas, use the following method:

How To Make Dried Bananas

1. Choose firm, ripe eating bananas. Peel.
2. Slice and lay on a frame stretched with cloth.

3. Cover with thin netting. Dry the bananas in the sun, turning them two or three times a day. When they are dry, they are brown, but not hard. Drying takes three to six days.

4. Pack in jars or wrap in banana leaves to keep out any moisture.

Dried bananas make a delicious and inexpensive snack. If dried correctly, none of the nutrients is lost. Selling dried bananas as snacks is a good way to make money using a local food. Dried bananas can also be soaked and cooked, or added to dishes such as porridge before cooking.

How To Make Banana Bread

Two loaves:

3½ cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups mashed, ripe eating bananas
2 tablespoons lemon juice
¾ Cup butter or margarine
1½ cups sugar
3 eggs
¾ Cup milk

1. Sift together flour, baking powder, salt, and baking soda. Set aside.
2. Mash bananas with a fork. Add lemon juice and mix. Be sure the bananas are mashed well.

3. Cream together the butter or margarine and sugar, until they are well mixed. Add eggs and beat thoroughly until light.

4. Add the sifted ingredients to the egg mixture in small amounts, adding a little of the milk each time. Beat well after each addition.

5. Fold in the banana mixture. Mix well.

6. Pour mixture into two greased loaf pans. Bake in a moderate oven (180°C or 350°F) for about 1 hour.

7. Cool and serve.

Note: Instead of baking, this bread can also be steamed using the following method:

1. Start water boiling in a large pot with stones or shells in the bottom.
2. Grease 2 large clean tin cans.
3. Pour bread mixture into cans, no more than half full.
4. Cover can tops with grease-proof paper or a leaf.
5. Put the cans in the pot, resting on the stones or shells. Cover the pot.
6. Steam the bread for 1 hour, or until a knife comes out dry after it is put into the bread.

How To Make Banana Rice

Six to eight servings:

2 cups rice uncooked
12 ripe eating bananas
1 coconut
Salt to taste

1. Clean rice.
2. Peel and slice bananas.

3. Put rice and bananas in a pot. Add water to 5 cm (2 inches) above the rice and boil gently until cooked.

4. Grate coconut, add a little water, and squeeze out the cream. Add salt to taste.

5. When rice is cooked, mix in the coconut cream.

6. Serve hot or cold with greens or other vegetables.

How To Make Banana Milk Drink

One serving:

1 cup milk
1 ripe eating banana

1. Use fresh milk or prepare powdered milk by using 1 cup water to 4 tablespoons of milk powder.
2. Mash banana thoroughly.

3. Pour mashed banana into milk and stir well.

4. Serve in a glass.

Note: This is a good drink for babies and children. It is also a very refreshing drink for sick people.

How To Make Banana Flower Soup

Four servings:

2 cooking banana flowers
1 cup shelled shrimp or prawns
1 onion, sliced
4 tablespoons oil
2 cups water
4 cloves garlic, chopped (optional)
Lemon and salt to taste

1. Remove the tough covering of the flower. Slice across into thin pieces. Squeeze it with salt and rinse. Set aside.
2. Mix the shrimp or prawns with the sliced onion and lemon juice.

3. Fry the garlic in the oil. Add the shrimp mixture.

4. Add the water and continue cooking.

5. Add the flowers. Turn over constantly until tender. Season with salt.

6. Serve hot.

How To Make Banana Chips

Eight servings:

2 green cooking bananas
Oil for frying
Salt to taste

1. Pour oil into pot to heat.
2. Peel bananas and cut them into thin slices.
3. Put them on paper-covered plates and sprinkle with salt.
4. When oil is very hot, fry chips until they are a pale gold in colour.
5. Drain on paper. Serve at once.

How To Make Bananas in Coconut Cream

Six to eight servings:

6 ripe cooking bananas
1 cup grated coconut
Coconut cream from 2 coconuts
Sugar (optional)

1. Peel bananas and cut in half along their length.
2. Coat with grated coconut.
3. Place in baking dish. Sprinkle with sugar, if desired. Cover with coconut cream.
4. Bake in a moderate oven (180°C or 350°F) for 20 to 30 minutes.
5. Serve cold.

How To Make Stuffed Green Bananas

Six to eight servings:

6 green cooking bananas
225 g (8 oz) raw minced meat
1 onion, chopped
1 egg, beaten

1. Without peeling, cut the bananas into halves along their length.
2. Scoop out the flesh with a spoon. Leave the peel boat-shaped.

3. Grate the banana flesh.

4. Mix the mince, chopped onion, and salt with the grated banana flesh. Add the beaten egg to bind the mixture.

5. Put the mixture back into the banana peels. Tie the halves together with string.

6. Steam for 25 minutes or bake in a moderate oven (180°C or 350°F) for 45 minutes.

7. Serve with gravy or a sauce made from cooked tomatoes, if desired.

Here is a video guide how to make banana cake: 
Source: South Pacific Commission, photo courtesy of wikimedia. More Banana recipes here.

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