Last week I was very generously offered some backyard bananas by fellow Townsvillain Dee, of the blog Cycling Paradise. Of course I accepted, and quickly whipped up a batch of biscuits as payment. When she dropped them off, I was a little taken aback...
How on earth would I be able to use up 4 1/2 big bunches of lady finger bananas, especially given that Andy's away?
A week and a half later, I needn't have worried. I've eated a lot of bananas, in a variety of different forms. First, though, I peeled one whole bunch and put it straight into the freezer for later use.
I've been having lots of sliced banana on my morning muesli.
I had a banana split, with mango and crushed peanuts on vanilla soy ice cream.
Sunday I spent a while baking, to replenish the freezer with post-bike ride snacks and morning tea food. First, spiced banana empanadas. The empanada dough recipe is from The Tropical Vegan Kitchen, but instead of using pumpkin for the filling as she suggests, I used mashed banana mixed with cinnamon and crystallised ginger. Something about these is a little bit funny, texture-wise, but overall I like them.
I also used up some ripe mangoes for Hawaiian Mango-Nut Bread, from The Tropical Vegan Kitchen. Mango, banana, dates, and I used sunflower seeds. This is really yummy, and nice and crunchy on the outside.
All of that got me down to about half...
So I've also been indulging in smoothies. Plain banana + flax + soy milk; sorbet-ish mango + banana + orange juice; and my favourite, banana + chocolate + sunflower butter.
I couldn't let my wealth of bananas pass without venturing into experimental territory, though. I wanted a savoury dish that included bananas, and The Tropical Vegan Kitchen delivered for me. Indian Black Barley Pilaf with Bananas and Oranges, made with plain instead of black barley, and with the addition of spinach. This was an easy dish to make and really just involved dumping everything together and simmering before stirring the fruit in at the end. It was tasty, and the cinnamon and coriander of the dish was well-matched with the tangy orange and the sweet banana.
And just last night I made the "Banana Swirl Cheese Cake" from Vegan Planet. Except, I didn't bother with swirling, and the fact that there is no cream cheese in this recipe leads me to call it "Peanut Butter Banana Pie". This was very simple--make crust, blend tofu with banana, blend tofu with peanut butter, pour into crust and bake. And surprisingly, the tofu seems to have firmed up quite well even without any corn flour or other thickeners. The true test will be today when I take the sides off the pan and try to slice it, so stay tuned for an update.
With all of that, I still have about 10 bananas left at home. With a vegan picnic potluck coming up on Sunday, I'm thinking I have to bring something banana-y. I was thinking about Banana Split Pudding Brownies from Vegan with a Vengeance but am open to other suggestions, so if you know of any great uses for bananas please let me know.