Look at them poor old brown floppy bananas sprawled out across the fruit bowl. The whiff alone of an old banana is enough to make some gag, but what if I told you, that with little effort, a little love and a few extra ingredients, you could turn them into something super delicious, something that smells amazing and something that contains NO added sugar.
Did you know : It has been estimated that 1.4 million bananas get wasted every day around the world.
There is absolutely no excuse for throwing a spotty and dark banana in the bin. They are so versatile. Throw them in smoothies, freeze them for cool snacks, mix in with porridge or do as I have done below, mash it and bake banana bread.
Once you have tasted this delicious Banana Bread you will never throw bananas away again, just because they are ‘old looking’. You may even find yourself scouring the reduced fruit section in your local supermarket, in hope of finding a bargain bunch of bananas from as little as 5p!! (believe me,it does happen. Asda are great for this!).
Also’old’ bananas have many more health benefits. The riper they get they better the nutrients get.
22 Facts about the humble Banana:
- Bananas help overcome depression due to high levels of tryptophan, which is converted into serotonin — the happy-mood brain neurotransmitter.
- Eat two bananas before a strenuous workout to pack an energy punch and sustain your blood sugar.
- Protect against muscle cramps during workouts and night time leg cramps by eating a banana.
- Counteract calcium loss during urination and build strong bones by supplementing with a banana.
- Improve your mood and reduce PMS symptoms by eating a banana, which regulates blood sugar and produces stress-relieving relaxation.
- Bananas reduce swelling, protect against type II diabetes, aid weight loss, strengthen the nervous system, and help with the production of white blood cells, all due to high levels of vitamin B-6.
- Strengthen your blood and relieve anaemia with the added iron from bananas.
- High in potassium and low in salt, bananas are officially recognised by the FDA as being able to lower blood pressure and protect against heart attack and stroke.
- Rich in pectin, bananas aid digestion and gently chelate toxins and heavy metals from the body.
- Bananas act as a prebiotic, stimulating the growth of friendly bacteria in the bowel. They also produce digestive enzymes to assist in absorbing nutrients.
- Constipated? High fibre in bananas can help normalise bowel motility.
- Got the runs? Bananas are soothing to the digestive tract and help restore lost electrolytes after diarrhoea.
- Bananas are a natural antacid, providing relief from acid reflux, heartburn, and GERD.
- Bananas are the only raw fruit that can be consumed without distress to relieve stomach ulcers by coating the lining of the stomach against corrosive acids.
- Eating bananas will help prevent kidney cancer, protects the eyes against macular degeneration and builds strong bones by increasing calcium absorption.
- Bananas make you smarter and help with learning by making you more alert. Eat a banana before an exam to benefit from the high levels of potassium.
- Bananas are high in antioxidants, providing protection from free radicals and chronic disease.
- Eating a banana between meals helps stabilise blood sugar and reduce nausea from morning sickness.
- Control blood sugar and avoid binging between meals by eating a banana.
- Eating a banana can lower the body temperature and cool you during a fever or on a hot day.
- The natural mood-enhancer tryptophan helps to relieve Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).
- Quitting smoking? Bananas contain high levels of B-vitamins as well as potassium and magnesium to speed recovery from the effects of withdrawal.
Even the peel has uses too:
- Rub a bug bite or hives with the inside of the banana peel to relieve itching and irritation.
- Remove a wart by placing the inside of a piece of banana peel against the wart and taping it in place.
- Rub the inside of a banana peel on your leather shoes or handbag and polish with a dry cloth for a quick shine.
- Teeth Whitener: Rub the inside of your banana peel on your teeth to whiten them. Apparently, the manganese, magnesium and potassium helps whiten the enamel of your teeth.
- Splinter Removal: Banana peels help ease splinters out of your skin. Place banana peel on a splinter with athletic tape for a while and then try to ease the splinter out.
- Rose Food: Here are a few great recipes for feeding your roses with banana peels that are rich in calcium and magnesium, as well as many other trace minerals that your flowers love.
- Tomato Plant Fertiliser: Wrap a banana peel around your tomato starts when you plant them in the garden and they’ll enjoy the nutrients from the peel as they grow throughout the summer.
So this is my Thrifty Thursday gift to you. A delicious recipe that can save bananas from the bin, provide you with so many beneficial nutrients that help lift your mood and give you energy. It can be baked in a bread machine or oven and is guaranteed to fill your home with a tasty aroma…….bon appetit!
Banana Chocolate Chip Bread
1/3 cup melted butter
1 ounce milk
2 mashed bananas
2 cups plain flour
2/3 cups sugar
1.25 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 cup chocolate chips
Bread Machine Method:
- Pour eggs, butter, milk and bananas into the bread pan and set it aside.
- In medium bowl stir together all dry ingredients.
- Add dry ingredients to pan
- Press “Quick Bread” setting on your machine
When cycle is finished, remove bread from pan and place on a cooling rack
- Pre heat oven to 180°C and and butter a 4 x 8-inch loaf tin.
- Mix eggs, butter, milk and bananas in a bowl and set it aside.
- In medium bowl stir together all dry ingredients.
- Add wet mixture to the dry ingredients and lovingly combine.
- Pour the mixture into your loaf tin. Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour at 180°C, or until a tester inserted into the centre comes out clean.
Remove from oven and cool completely on a rack. Remove the banana bread from the tin. Slice and serve.
Replace the 1/2 cup of walnuts with other nuts
replace the 1/2 cup of chocolate chips with some dried fruit….
Macadamia & Apricot
Almond & Cherry
Pecan & Date
Pistachio & Cranberry