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Apr 24, 2011 12:12 AM

Banana Flowers Sold Here?

Prompted by a current post about Asian noodle soups, I was reading about Banana Flowers (tasting somewhat like artichoke) being used as a component in SE Asian cooking. Has anyone seen them in Boston area Asian markets?thanks much.

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    1. re: autopi

      I saw them a Russo's about a week ago.

      1. re: autopi

        no kidding?! wow, i gotta try these. DO they taste something like artichoke, youall ?

      2. any se asian market will have them. you can also buy shredded banana blossoms at some of the vietnamese markets in dorchester

        1. Russo's for sure. There's a classic Thai "Hua Plii" salad I love to make. The blossoms want to be soaked in aciduated water first to slow discoloration. Cutting the blossom on the bias and leaving the insides behind is key. Some discard the outer leaves and blanch the inner core. The outer leaf is a great way to present your salad. Chef David Thompson's Oyster and Banana Blossom recipe in his opus "Thai Food" is a special occasion.

          6 Replies
          1. re: EATTV

            this is so cool! i'll follow suit. btw, when i was reading the very comprehensive Wiki piece on bananas, it said that banana skins are EDIBLE. Have you ever seen a recipe that included the skin?

            And the flower, do you think it tastes like artichoke? thank you.

            1. re: opinionatedchef

              I've had a salad of the julienned outer leaves with tamarind and peanuts. It's addictive. The inner parts are somewhat like artichoke although I guess that hasn't occurred to me before. I've enjoyed it with Pad Thai as well as meat salads with chicken and shrimp. I'm guessing a quick deep fry with basil would be great. (Is Russo's open today?)

              1. re: opinionatedchef

                When I ws a kid, someone recommended banana skins to make a tea to relieve asthma symptoms. It tasted pretty good, but the skins are so fibrous I can't imagine eating them.

                1. re: bluepotato2

                  how cool! as to the skins, i'm imagining that if they were sauteed and/or steamed, that should help...........

                  1. re: bluepotato2

                    There are dishes in Kerala (a south western state in India) that use plantain skins. See Ammini Ramachandran's excellent cookbook "Grains, Greens, and Grated Coconuts", or simply Google. Likewise, a bit of Googling throws up banana skin recipes.

              2. Just saw them at Kam Man in Quincy. Whole, wrapped in packs of two by the fresh greens.

                1. I saw them at Ming's on Sunday.