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May 22, 2009 12:24 PM


Hi ya'll,

I was really excited to visit the San Carlos Farmers Market and find a lady there who was selling bananas. She grows regular bananas and apple-bananas on her farm. Next time I'll ask her for more details about where her farm is located, but I was really excited since we have been trying to eat mostly local.
The apple-bananas are soooo good too!

Does anyone know of other farmers markets where the banana lady appears?

I haven't had apple-bananas since I was in Hawaii. I had even inquired about having apple-bananas shipped a few years back and been put on waiting list. Wouldn't you know, the day after I find apple-bananas, I get an email from them saying they are ready to start shipping. Deja-vu & too late! lol

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  1. I see apple bananas at Asian markets, like in Chinatown, Clement, etc. on occasion. I think they're from HI or maybe Mexico but I'm not sure.

    4 Replies
    1. re: ML8000

      I bought apple banana from Berkeley Bowl today. They were from Central America, and were labeled with the Spanish name "Manzano bananas." The ones I bought aren't ripe, though, even though they look ripe.

      1. re: Ruth Lafler

        Dont be fooled by those manzano bananas
        They are a completely different from the ones in Hawaii. Every one I have ever tasted is chalky even though they look ready.
        Not at all like the sweet/tart lusciousness of a true hawaiian apple banana.

        1. re: mikeylikesit

          I put the ones I bought last Saturday in the fruit bowl and forgot about them until this morning. They didn't look nasty and over ripe, so I tried one and it was pretty good. Maybe not as good as the ones I had in Hawaii, but not chalky. I think they have to appear much riper than "regular" bananas before they're ready to eat.

          1. re: Ruth Lafler

            I found what may really be an apple banana.
            There is a new store at 18th and Mission (that has a free underground parking) that sells all kinds of stuff.... asian, mexican, russian, meat, poultry. They had some bananas that looked just like apple bananas and were labled apple bananas. I thought to myself its one of those imposter manzano bananas. I bought one on the way out. It was surprisingly good.
            Almost like a real apple banana. Not quite but close. My hopes are high that we well finally get them here on the mainland. Boy do i miss the tree in my backyard in Kaneohe.

    2. When is the San Carlos Farmers Market?
      Is this vendor there all the time?
      I lived in Hawaii for 6 years and I REALLY MISS apple bananas.
      IMHO they are so much better then regular bananas.
      I did have them shipped to me a few times from the big island but it was kinda expensive, $50 for about 5 pounds.

      3 Replies
      1. re: mikeylikesit

        The San Carlos FM is on Thursday 4-8pm.

        Not sure if she is there all the time..... I'll be going again in 2 weeks and ask her what other FMs she is at as well.
        ia that apple bananas are wayyyyy better. My folks are going to now be VERY happy when they visit us. When we were in HI, they ate all my apple-bananas! lol

        San Carlos Farmers Market
        Laurel St Cherry St, San Carlos, CA 94070

        1. re: cookieyumyum

          Im gonna go this Thursday. I hope she is there.

          1. re: mikeylikesit

            Any updates? I just had my first apple banana in Hawaii and I'm hooked. I loved that they're a little tangier and less cloying than "regular" bananas.

      2. I just had my second apple banana. They are excellent and remind me of Hawaii. Yes, they are the true apple banana.

        3 Replies
          1. re: Ruth Lafler

            There's a woman who sells rambutan, lychees, mangos, avocados and another type of banana. You have to ask her for it. She'll only bring it in if they are ripe, which means they look tinged with black. When you peel the skin, the banana is tender on the outside, not mushy, and almost crunchy on the inside. It tastes "crisper" than a regular banana.

            1. re: peppatty

              The other type of Banana is called Golden Fingers. I ended up getting those today because she was out of Apple-Bananas.
              I've only seen the A.B.s on display once, so most of the time you'll have to ask for them. Just look for the lady with bananas at the San Carlos FM, only one there lol.
              She sometimes sells cut up pieces of JackFruit as well as the above items.

              She said her farm is down south. She was really busy today but I'll try to get a detail list of other FMs she attends next time.

        1. There is a lady (not sure if its the same lady as in San Carlos) who sells apple-bananas and all kinds of other tropical fruits (bananas/avocados/lychees/dragon fruits/mangoes etc) at the Saturday Alemany Farmers Market in San Francisco.
          I believe these are grown near Palmdale CA.

          Alemany Farmers' Market
          100 Alemany Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94110

          3 Replies
          1. re: bong

            I had the golden fingers this weekend at the alemany farmers market.
            They werent that great.... definately not the same or even close to an apple banana.
            Still havent made it to the thursday market in san carlos. :(

            1. re: mikeylikesit

              The first 2-3 weekends of June she also had apple bananas (in addition to the golden fingers)

              1. re: bong

                I went to the Alemany market yesterday. It took me a little while to find her (Stall 25), but she was there. She had Apple Bananas, but was out of Golden Fingers, which she said "taste just like regular bananas anyway". The Apple Bananas were very expensive ($4.50/lb.), but worth it. Much richer, complex taste than the Cavindish bananas we're all used to. She had Apple Bananas that were ripe now and ones that she said would ripen at room temp within 3 days. I took the ripe ones, which she said would keep in the fridge for 1 1/2 weeks.

          2. Saw something called a Burro Banana at 99 Ranch -- anything close to a Apple Banana?

            1 Reply
            1. re: kc72

              Just got some apple-bananas today from her again today. Sooooo good!
              She said her schedule is as follows:

              Saturday: Alemany Farmer's Market
              Sunday: Palo Alto California Ave. Farmers Market

              Also, she told me she only attends the San Carlos FM on Thursday for 2 months in the summer when she has extra fruit.

              Hope this helps anyone hankerin' for an apple-banana!

              The Burro Banana sounds similar, but with a lemon taste. I've never had one though....

              Alemany Farmers' Market
              100 Alemany Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94110