Yesterday, a friend asked me: "What can I do with bananas?" Hers were starting to go off so I suggested she stick them in the freezer and I'd write this post. Coincidentally, I had made banana bread last week as I had about 8 bananas cluttering up my freezer. Anytime a banana starts to look like this in the fruit bowl:
I pop it into the freezer to be dealt with a later date. They're great frozen just as they are - taste just like ice cream. Or in a smoothie - add some yogurt and a handful of berries (fresh or frozen) and blend. But my favourite thing to make with them is banana bread.
When the stash of bananas starts to overtake my freezer I take it as a sign, stick em in a bowl to thaw and get cracking on the rest.
|They'll just slip right out when thawed or you can peel them with a knife if you can stand the cold!|
Or messing up the rest. I tossed in a cup of flour into the wrong bowl. There is not enough counter space in this kitchen people!
I wanted to add some chocolate but I didn't have any chocolate chips so I used a portion of this giant chocolate bar we got as part of a wedding present (it accompanied a cherished Hudson Bay blanket that my aunt brought over from Canada and lugged around to several hotels - but funnily enough, the tag says it's made in England!) Anyway - I broke it into chunks and stored it in the freezer back in August and remembering that I had it, took a few chunks out, placed them in a plastic bag and broke them up using a hammer. (Place a towel underneath and do it on a surface your not too worried about - I had visions of my counter top splitting in half so I broke them up on the laminate floor - maybe place them on a wooden chopping board)
I doubled the recipe and made 24 muffins. Both the bread and muffins can be frozen (I wrap the bread in foil and store the muffins in a tin). The muffins are great for lunches; just take one from the freezer and pop it into a packed lunch and it will be thawed by the time lunch rolls around.
Recipe (makes enough to fill 2 bread tins)
2 cups all-purpose flour1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 eggs, beaten
1/4 cup butter, melted
4 bananas, mashed
1/2 cup walnuts (optional)
1/2 cup chocolate chips (optional)
1. Grease and flour 2 loaf pans (I prefer to use wax paper bread tin liners) and preheat oven to 350°F or 175°C.
2. Whisk together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and sugar in a large bowl. Mix in slightly beaten eggs, vanilla, melted butter and mashed bananas. Stir in nuts and chocolate chips if using.
3. Divide between 2 tins and bake for 45 minutes to an hour or until toothpick inserted in the middle of the loaf comes out clean.
Any other ideas for using old bananas? Or any other favourite banana bread recipes out there? Please share! This isn't my great-grandmother's grandmother's recipe or anything, I adapted it from one I found on All Recipes, so if you have any tried and tested versions of your own, I'd love to hear about them!