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Help! I'm going BANANAS!

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I have been craving banana food for a while. I need your help to use up (or save for later) about 20 VERY RIPE bananas.

First, I want a recipe for a very moist, dense banana-coconut bread or cakeā€¦one that has nuts, too.

Second, I want a soft banana - nut cookie, maybe with some chocolate chips.

Third, do you have a recipe for any banana scones or tea cakes (something I could keep after baking, in the freezer, for a quick snack)?

Fourth, do you have something banana-y that has become a great favorite of yours? A banana caramel tart using puff pastry? Something different?

Fifth, do you know of an easy banana bar cookie or blondie?

Finally, can I mash and freeze the ripe bananas that I cannot use up right away?

Thank you, thank you, thank you!

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  1. Yes, you can freeze them (I just leave them in their skins, put them in a plastic bag, and freeze.)

    Here's my favorite:
    http://allrecipes.com/recipe/strawnan...
    It uses strawberries -- if fresh ones aren't around I use the frozen (non sweetened) berries. The bread is of course a nice pink, and you can taste both the banana and strawberry.

    1. to answer none of your questions, you can just put the whole bananas in the freezer intact. Remove as many as your recipe calls for an hour or so ahead, or give them a minute in the microwave. I have never done it any other way.

      These are a freezer staple at my house for quick weekday breakfasts. I make them by the double batch:
      http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/ban...
      I reduce the sugar and add berries and ground flax.

      1. I like the faux ice creams made with pureed banana instead of part or all of the dairy. I don't use a recipe though Alton Brown's gets mentions on CH. I just blend the banana with coconut milk and go from there - sometimes adding other fruits, sometimes caramel or chocolate, sweetened to taste. Adding a little guar gum makes it a little easier to scoop but it remains scoopable without. There ARE ice crystals but they are not unpleasant.

        CHOW recipes contains my Healthy Hummingbird Muffins, that were a finalist in the muffin contest a couple of years ago. Add cream cheese frosting and they are cupcakes. Either way they freeze well. You might like other recipes for Hummingbird Cake or quickbread, which I prefer to regular banana bread.

        You can freeze the bananas in the skin, which will keep the flesh color lighter than if you mash them first, though either will work. The skin will become entirely black. Not to worry. Thaw in a bowl, because LOTS of liquid will seep out.

        ATK (or CC) has a banana bread recipe that is excellent and should be free online. It is mentioned in other CH threads. It uses a lot of bananas, concentrating the flavor by nuking them, then boiling down the exuded liquid.

        You can add nuts to any banana bread recipe without altering the rest of the ingredients or
        directions.

        1. The elvis cake is a go-to cake for me. I use half cream cheese in the pb frosting.

          http://www.foodaphilia.com/2007/07/el...

          Epicurious's caramel banana trifle is amazing, mostly for the caramel bananas. I play w/ the recipe and always make more caramel bananas to eat.

          http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

          For a basic banana bread recipe, I like the older Best Recipe/CI recipe w/ yogurt. And it makes all the difference w/ whole fat yogurt. I play with that to make snack cakes, add different flavors (would probably be good for your banana coconut cake). Although, this caramel banana upside down cake is very good.

          http://www.howsweeteats.com/2012/07/u...

          Since I apparently (never realized it until now) that I have a thing for caramelized bananas, banana tartin is a quick, easy one, if you use premaide puff (coming into the season where Trader Joe's starts carrying theirs).

          http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

          As others have said, just freeze the banana in the peel. So much easier.

          1. This is sort of an embarrassment, but I just ADORE this recipe that I found on AllRecipes. I am very picky about my cake and especially with banana anything!

            This recipe uses a lot of bananas and though it has odd instructions, it never disappoints!
            The first time I made this, I halved the recipe, which was a grave mistake. The cake was gone by morning. We don't make the frosting, we just use dark chocolate ganache.

            http://allrecipes.com/recipe/banana-c...

            3 Replies
            1. re: PuttingUpWithKara

              That looks really good. Why are you embarrassed about it?

              1. re: chowser

                I usually prefer to say "Yes, here is my recipe for..." instead of using others'. Sometimes it feels wrong when people beg to know where my recipe and I have to admit I ganked it from Allrecipes.
                That being said, it's still a wonderful resource, and this banana cake needs NO improvement (minus the chocolate!) Chocolate improves everything.

                1. re: PuttingUpWithKara

                  I've gotten some really good recipes from Allrecipes and seen some that make me wonder. It is a good resource and it's where I found my favorite grilled naan recipe. I'll have to give this recipe a try. I love cream cheese frosting on banana cake so might keep that, though chocolate ganache is tempting, too. Thanks!

            2. Yes! You can mash and freeze bananas! you can even just freeze them in their skins. Put the frozen banana in a food processor and instant banana soft serve! Add cocoa, peanut butter, cinnamon, vanilla and other flavor for fun.

              To answer question 4 my favorite thing to do with a banana is to roast it! I cut in in half lengthwise and pop it on foil and put it in my toaster overn for about 15 minutes until it gets brown and bubble on top. I serve it for breakfast over yogurt, oat meal, or even alone. Top it with toasts almonds, toasted coconut shreds, poppy seeds or maple syrup. Quickly, healthy, and different breakfast.

              7 Replies
              1. re: luciaannek

                Several folks mentioned freezing the bananas in their skins and I'm wondering why you wouldn't peel it and then freeze? Can someone enlighten me?

                1. re: lynnlato

                  I think it keeps it from darkening?

                  1. re: coll

                    Yes, keeps the flesh from darkening, and also provides another layer to reduce freezer burn and the absorption of fridge odors through the baggie.

                    1. re: greygarious

                      I freeze peeled bananas and I break them in half first before putting several in a ziploc baggie. then I can just pull out as many halves as I need and into the Vitamix they go (for smoothies). I haven't had an issue with them darkening, although it wouldn't matter anyway cuz I just blend them for smoothies most of the time.

                      Thanks for all the responses! :)

                  2. re: lynnlato

                    I doesn't matter.I do what ever is easiest at the time.Singles get added to the freezer plastic bag,three or more get the recipe ready container.

                    1. re: lynnlato

                      It's easier.

                      1. re: lynnlato

                        because then they're their own container and are already pre-portioned.

                    2. Another fan of freezing very ripe bananas.
                      I've used them in both basic banana muffins (bread) and smoothies with great success.

                      1. This is a great banana-based cookie:
                        http://www.101cookbooks.com/archives/...

                        I have also made it with ginger and raisins.

                        My favourite way to use bananas is to make soft-serve ice cream.
                        http://www.thekitchn.com/magic-one-in...
                        ---
                        http://tastespace.wordpress.com

                        1. Banana Chocolate Chip Cookies

                          Ingredients
                          1 cup granulated sugar
                          3/4 cup shortening
                          2 overripe bananas, mashed
                          1 large egg
                          1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
                          1 3/4 cups rolled oats
                          1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
                          1/2 teaspoon baking soda
                          1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
                          1/2 teaspoon salt
                          1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
                          1 cup milk chocolate chips (about half a 12-ounce bag)

                          Directions
                          Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

                          In a large mixing bowl, cream together the sugar and shortening until light and fluffy. Mix in the bananas and egg and mix well, scraping down the sides of the bowl. Mix in the vanilla.

                          In a separate large mixing bowl, combine the rolled oats, flour, baking soda, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg. Mix until thoroughly combined.

                          Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix just until combined. It will be a wet cookie dough. Stir in the chocolate chips.

                          Using a 2 spoons or an ice cream scoop is a great way to portion cookies with wetter doughs like this one. Portion cookies out using overflowing tablespoonfuls on 2 ungreased cookie sheets, 12 cookies per sheet. Bake just until golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. After 10 minutes, turn and swap the cookie sheets on each rack for even cooking. Cool on a wire rack.

                          1. Banana Streusel Snack Cake

                            Streusel
                            6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
                            6 tablespoons light brown sugar
                            3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
                            1/4 teaspoon cinnamon (I ran out of cinnamon (how did I run out of cinnamon?) and use 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/8 teaspoon ground ginger instead)

                            Cake
                            2 cups unsifted cake flour
                            1 teaspoon baking powder
                            1/2 teaspoon baking soda
                            1/2 teaspoon salt
                            1 cup ripe mashed banana (2 large or 3 medium) (I used 3 medium bananas)
                            3 tablespoons whole milk (I used almond milk)
                            1 teaspoon vanilla extract
                            1 stick butter, room temperature
                            1 cup sugar
                            1 large egg

                            Prep: Prep a 9 x 5 loaf pan or 8 x 8 square pan by butter and flouring it, or spraying it with Pam with Flour. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

                            For the streusel: Using your fingertips, mix together the flour, sugar, butter and cinnamon until lumpy; set aside. For the batter: Sift together flour, baking powder, soda, and salt onto a sheet of parchment or wax paper (save the paper to help you invert the cake onto a rack later). Mash bananas in a medium bowl, then add the milk and vanilla extract. Using an electric mixer with a paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat in the egg until completely incorporated. Add the banana mixture (it will look curdled, that's OK). With the mixer on low speed, gradually add the flour mixture. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a rubber spatula. Sprinkle the streusel evenly over the top. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes (9 x 3 loaf pan) or 35 minutes (8 x 8 pan), until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool cake on a rack for 10 minutes. Carefully invert onto a rack covered with parchment. Place another rack on top and invert again so the streusel is on top. Let cool.

                            1. I made yummy banana scones, it's in the Bisquick cookbook. They are actually " chocolate chip scones", but I replaced the choc chips, with diced banana. Just google the recipe. It's like, bisquick, cream, sugar, and the banana, that's it( if I remember correctly). Oh ya, I added lemon zest to the batter, and made a lemon glaze .

                              1. wow, everyone! thanks so much for the ideas and recipes. my mouth is watering just reading your responses.

                                1. [Fourth, do you have something banana-y that has become a great favorite of yours? A banana caramel tart using puff pastry? Something different?]

                                  I don't know if you would consider it different, but banoffee pie is crazy good. It doesn't sound like it would be from hearing about it, but the taste is something fantastic.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: haiku.

                                    +1 to this idea. Love bannoffee pie. Half my family hated it when I tried it, though, so I have only made it once. The combination of caramel, coffee and banana appears to be quite controversial for some. :-)

                                    1. re: geekmom

                                      Oh, that's terrible! More pie for you, I hope? Banoffee pie is one of the most equally glorious and easy things that I've ever made. +2 for PIE!

                                  2. A month or two ago I made something like this Jamaican Banana Jam, but used spiced rum instead of water, and added some cinnamon and a vanilla bean. I have company staying over right now and can't wait to hear their reviews when they wake up to this, served with my homemade banana bread.

                                    http://www.yummly.com/recipe/Jamaica-....

                                    1. http://www.cooks.com/rec/view/0,174,1...

                                      I made these mini banana oatmeal muffins on Friday. Used almond breeze instead of milk and applesauce instead of butter. I made them mini and added a few mini chocolate chips o each muffin.

                                      1. "Third, do you have a recipe for any banana scones or tea cakes (something I could keep after baking, in the freezer, for a quick snack)?"

                                        I just made the Banana-Date tea cake from the Tartine cookbook last week. I wish I could share a picture with you, but I was too busy eating it to take a photo. It was absolutely packed full of walnuts and chopped dates, so there was a satisfying diversity of textures which made it more than just your usual banana bread (not to mention that it's extremely filling, especially when you spread butter on your slice... a fantastic afternoon pick-me-up with a nice strong cup of black tea). Numerous bloggers have posted the recipe, if you decide you want to try it out.

                                        1. http://orangette.blogspot.com/2006/10...

                                          this recipe has made me making lots of banana cake lately. it's adaptable, as i don't always make the coconut frosting. i have added chocolate chips, blueberries, crystallized ginger. (erm, separate cakes.) last time i had left-over crumb mixture from a coffee cake and topped it with that.

                                          i especially like brown sugar paired with fruit in baked goods.

                                          am another that freezes them in the skin. much less mess.

                                          1. I know you were talking about sweet things, but I really love this vegan curry recipe, which I originally saw on the post punk kitchen website:

                                            http://www.food.com/recipe/pumpkin-ba...

                                            I usually put in more banana than the recipe calls for, and I often add other items too (like some kind of meat, as I'm not vegetarian). I've also often used sweet potato instead of pumpkin, but it is the right time of year...

                                            1. To your fourth question: Banana pancakes. Put sliced banana onto the batter (after you pour it on the griddle). Like you would sprinkle on blueberries. Once you get your cooking time down so that they carmelize just right ... yummmmmm.