How many times have you thrown brown bananas away because you didn’t know what to do with them? Here are a few ideas to tantalize your taste buds: strawberry banana smoothies, chocolate banana smoothies, banana nut waffles and chocolate chip banana bread–just to name a few.
You can freeze bananas whole or into convenience slices. Sometimes, I prefer to freeze them whole (skin and all) when I plan to bake with them later. You have to thaw the whole banana for about a half hour, but the skin preserves it better and keeps them from getting mushy as they thaw. Proceed to mash for baking recipes. The cold bananas will make your batter cold, allow it to set a room temperature for about ten minutes or add about 5 minutes to your baking time (just take note when using frozen bananas).
Convenience slices work much better for smoothies. They blend easier than whole–and no thawing necessary– they add a nice texture to smoothies without adding ice. Here’s how you can make your own convenience bananas. Slice overripe bananas on a chopping board that will fit into your freezer.
Arrange them in a single layer on a chopping board, small cookie sheet or better yet, a piece of parchment paper to f prevent sticking. Allow them to freeze a couple of hours or overnight (just remember to bag the next day).
Remove the slices from your chopping board with a metal scraper or spatula and slide right into a freezer bag for smoothies. Or peel right off the paper if you have parchment paper.
Tip: You could add strawberries or other frozen fruit if you like and write the amount of liquid to add for a homemade version of a Yoplait smoothie package sold in stores for $2.50-$2.99 bag. Your older child or husband could conveniently make smoothies without having a recipe because the directions would be on the bag.
What’s your method for freezing bananas? Or have you thought of it?