Bananas!

Chino Valley, AZ

Bananas are a wonder food. I wait until my supermarket sells them as over-ripe. They are NOT really over-ripe, just the peels start getting some brown spots, and sometimes have a few bruises. Inside, the banana is ripe-just-right. And the store sells them for $.29 lb compared to $1.29 lb. I just bought 50 lbs! Put in the refridgerator to stop ripening. What to do with all these bananas?
There is the usual: banana bread, combine w zuchinni from the garden for banana-zuchinni bread. Can also make pancakes.
But wait! There's more!
2. Peel and cut into 1 inch pieces, spread on cookie sheet and freeze. Load into freezer bags. Put frozen chunks into blender or f-processor, whiz w a little milk and you have ice cream. And it is good! Sweet, no need to add sugar. The banana flavor is very mild when frozen. Add a few strawberries. Can add cocoa to make chocolate.
3. Banana shakes.... really good.
4. Blend up w some vanilla, add some chocolate chips and make popsicles. Also good.
5. Slice thin, dip in lemon juice, and dehydrate. This concentrates the sweet; it's like candy.
6. Dry peels and crumble up to add/stretch the chicken food.
7. Place a peel on the ground around a plant that needs more potasium.
I'm sure there are more uses, these are the ones I use.
Linda

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

I freeze them in the peels, thaw them on a plate (they weep), rip open the side and pour the banana into the bowl when making banana bread. They are fine even if the skin is black. Peeling gets buried with my kitchen compost in empty spaces in the vegie garden.

columbia, TN(Zone 7a)

pineapple, vanilla icecream, and frozen banannas, in the blender yummy!!!!!

Northeast, AR(Zone 7a)

They make great appetizers or snacks for parties too. Slice them like quarters, put a toothpick thru each one, place on a cookie sheet and freeze. After they're frozen, roll them in chocolate bark and sprinkle with nuts or candies and refreeze til ready to use. It's like eating an ice cream bar.

Delray Beach, FL(Zone 10a)

I peel my bananas and freeze them in batches of 5 bananas. When we make banana bread, that is the amount we need for a recipe.

Quick dessert: (6 servings)
In a large bow, mash 3 thawed peeled bananas with a potato masher. You want a soupy consistency, very few lumps.
Add 1 3/4 cups sour cream and mix well.
Whisk in 1 package instant sugar-free Jell-O pudding; choose from vanilla, chocolate, banana flavour, whatever you like best.
Mix thoroughly.
Fill a ready-made Graham Cracker crust pie shell with banana mixture and refrigerate 2 hours.
Or,
Pour the mixture directly into 6 dessert cups and refrigerate 2 hours, covered.

I hope you like it.
Sylvain.

Fairfield County, CT(Zone 6b)

I just blend up the frozen bananas and pretend they are ice cream.

Diamond Ridge, AK(Zone 5a)

I know a native-American lady who, when she has a sore throat, wraps a scarf around her neck and puts banana peels inside the scarf, against the skin. She swears by it.

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

I buy all I can get when my store sells the 'overripe' ones, too. I eat them fresh for about 3 days. On the 3rd day, I peel all that remain, cut them in 1/2 - 1in pieces, freeze, and store in bags. I use them as follows:

(1) Smoothies. Toss a handful (still frozen) in the blender with other fruits, veggies, and ice, plus optional ingredients like yogurt, milk, tofu, etc, nuts, seeds, and sweeteners (honey, agave, sugar, splenda, etc as desired). Sometimes I add Crystal Light drink mix if I don't have a lot of fruit. (When low on groceries I made some awesome smoothies with just 1 carrot, 1 apple, a handful of frozen banana slices, & a teaspoon or so of Crystal Light.

(2) Ice Cream. Process frozen slices in blender or food processor as others have mentioned. When doing this it's important to continue processing until you see a noticeable color change. The bananas will suddenly go from the normal banana color to almost white, basically the color of whipped cream or that vanilla, soft ice cream or frozen yogurt like they serve at McDonalds. When this change in color and appearance occurs, you will have something very similar to that soft serve ice cream. You can eat it as is, or refreeze for 30min or so before serving.

As others have mentioned you can add various flavorings like vanilla, choc, peanut butter, various fruit, whatever you like. Although it's quite sweet as is, you can also add honey, agave syrup, sugar, stevia, Splenda, etc if desired. I'm told vendors sell this stuff with various toppings like syrups, sprinkles, chopped fruit, coconut, choc chips, etc on the boardwalk somewhere in CA & it's a big hit!

(3) As is. Sometimes when I'm craving something sweet, I toss a handful (6-8) of frozen slices in a dish and eat them by hand. That number will stay frozen long enough for me to eat them, so it's not really messy. They are very sweet and do an amazing job of quelling a raging sugar craving. I'm told that children are particularly fond of frozen bananas, too, btw.

(4) Anything. Bananas sliced and frozen this way can be used to make banana bread or in pretty much any recipe that calls for mashed bananas. There is a recipe floating around for making cookies with just mashed bananas plus oatmeal to which you can add your choice of choc chips, nuts, coconut, raisins, etc. The cookies are baked. I haven't tried them yet, but I do plan to. (I've seen the recipe on various blogs and on Pinterest. Search for 2-ingredient cookie or 3-ingredient cookie. I've seen it under both titles.)

I love it when I see those bags of marked down bananas.

Edited to add link for cookies mentioned in Item 4: http://www.theburlapbag.com/2012/07/2-ingredient-cookies-plus-the-mix-ins-of-your-choice/

This message was edited Sep 3, 2013 5:35 PM

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

I've read that you can rub the inside of the peel on your face/skin like lotion. I've never tried this as I have oily skin and thus don't use lotion. I've also read that you can rub the inside of the peel on leather shoes to shine them. I tried placing 1 peel under each of my rose bushes, but wildlife (raccoons, opossums, etc) grabbed most of them the 1st night. If you don't have the wildlife problem, banana peels are great for giving plants a shot of potassium and other minerals, and they breakdown in just a few days.

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

I edited my post above to add the link for that banana-oat cookie recipe.

Edmonton, AB(Zone 3a)

I like the idea of peeling the bananas and freezing them in batches enough for banana bread. I hate peeling bananas after they have thawed out, it grosses me out. Lol

Lee's Summit, MO(Zone 6a)

Dream, you have to plant the banana peel UNDER the soil and put a rock on it.

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

Thanks, Kay,

That makes a lot of sense, especially in wildlife country. The tip I read (ages ago) said you could just drop the peels on the ground, 1 under each rose, the idea being that they decompose very quickly (in a few days) as apposed to other fruits & veggies. I guess the writer of that tip had not considered the effects of hungry wildlife.

I also read a tip about burying dry cat or dog food under plants as a source of plant food with lots of minerals and such. I don't recommend this, however, unless you want your plants dug up by hungry critters - or maybe your dog. LOL.

In years back I used to 'hide' compostable scraps under a pile of leaves in the backyard vegetable garden in winter to keep animals out of it while it decomposed. That actually worked The animals never messed with it, and the whole, decomposed mess got turned under in spring before planting.

Thanks again.

Charleston, SC(Zone 9a)

I don't like dealing with frozen/thawed banana peels either. Nor do I care for the blackened color and watery/mushy consistency frozen bananas acquire upon thawing. I've tried both freezing whole bananas and freezing mashed bananas, both of which grossed me out upon thawing.

For me the practice of slicing them in roughly 1/2-1in slices and freezing those in bags or containers works best. As long as they remain at least partly frozen, they keep their normal color and texture. I use them while still semi frozen. Even if I'm going to mash them, I do it while they still have some ice crystals in them and are still a nice 'banana' color. For smoothies, I toss the slices in the blender while still frozen solid, so they serve as both fruit and ice.

Although it is definitely preferable to freeze the slices in a single layer on a cookie sheet 1st before putting them into the bag or container, I don't often have time to do that with all of the bananas I bring home from a sale. I've found that even if I put them in the container directly and freeze, as long as I don't crowd them or mash them together, I am still able to pry them apart easily with my hand or utensil, like when I grab a handful to toss into my morning smoothie or for a midnight snack.

I very much like the idea of dehydrating them, also, and will definitely give that a try as soon as I get a dehydrator. Don't want to heat up the oven (and house) for that.

Clarksville, TN(Zone 6b)

Yes, banana chips. :)

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