Banana

Bananas.  

Bananas are a weird fruit to me... you can mash it up to make pancakes.  freeze it to make smoothies.  blend with a few ingredients and get non-dairy version of "ice cream".  carry it in a tote for a quick snack (without it getting mushy or ruined).  It's so versatile.  

And, of course, the hubster HATES the texture of bananas.  

{ face palm } 

Good news for me, though.  Our 4-yr old twins LOVE bananas and will actually eat a banana while mama is making a meal... for instance, last night, I was whipping up dinner.   The little miss comes into the kitchen asking, "mama, can I have a nana?"  Before I could answer, the hubster says "Honey, mama is working hard on dinner.  Let's wait to eat then, Okay?"  (sweet, right? but not the response I was hoping for from him.)

Dumbfounded.  I stare at this man who is looking at me like he solved the world's greatest problem.  

"What?" he asked.  "Well, you told our daughter she couldn't have a piece of fruit," I stated.  "Um, let's try not to do that... if they want fruit or vegetables, maybe we should allow them to have it."

Right?  They are FOUR... I'm lucky if they would like to eat something besides pancakes or popcorn!  

Anywho.  Enough about my family... let's look closer at BANANAS and all the goodness.  

 Photo by  Mike Dorner  on  Unsplash

Photo by Mike Dorner on Unsplash

How to select bananas? 

  • Look for vibrant yellow bananas that feel firm!  
  • We snag slightly green ones and allow to ripen on the counter top
  • Avoid ones that are fully ripen with brown spots, unless planning to use quickly in a baked-good recipe
  • Because of the THICK peel, I opt not to purchase organic bananas!  Even if pesticides are on the peel, we don't eat the peel in our house ;)  so, we save money here so we can purchase organic on those that truly matter! 

How to store bananas? 

  • We store our bananas on the counter top in a beautiful glass bowl our friend Amanda gave us... TMI?  Anywho.  Moving on... 
  • You can also PEEL, dice and store in a plastic bag in the freezer (good for smoothies or non-dairy ice cream)
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What are the benefits of bananas? 

Bananas are packed with vitamins such as B6 and C as well as potassium and manganese.  You may have seen runners snack on bananas after a long endurance run to help relieve or prevent them from muscle cramps.  

But there is so much more goodness in bananas... you can check it out here

How can you use a banana in your beauty regimen? 

Now.  I don't like to waste bananas... for some reason, it's different than a wee bit of honey or a lemon or even an egg.  I have no idea why.  Maybe it's because a WHOLE banana is a snack for the Gillies, our 4yr old twins.  

Anywho.  Here's a recipe I found to help smooth those cracked heels... you can score more DIY beauty recipes using bananas here!

 Photo by  How-Soon Ngu  on  Unsplash

Photo by How-Soon Ngu on Unsplash

CRACKED HEEL SALVE

  • Mash up two ripe bananas then put the mashed bananas on your heels!  Make sure your feet are dry and clean first, though! 
  • Wrap your feet in socks so not to cause a mess. 
  • After 10 minutes, rinse your feet thoroughly... and add your favorite foot lotion to your feet!  

What is your favorite recipe using bananas? 

Seriously though.  I love having bananas in the house... for a few reasons: 

  1. Quick "On-the-Go" snack that is Gillies approved (our 4yr old twins)
  2. When ripened, simply mash and add to muffins or pancakes... check below! 
  3. You can peel - dice - store in a plastic bag then freeze.  When making a smoothie, grab a handful of frozen banana bits to the blender for an extra creamy smoothie! 
  4. NICE-Cream... just blend frozen banana bits with berries, almond butter or cocoa for a non-dairy ice cream treat.  
  5. Coat in cinnamon and sauté for a quick healthy snack (loaded with antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties)
  6. Peel - Slice - Dehydrate... for some quick banana chips (which are good to keep on hand for long road trips). 
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See how many good things you can whip up with bananas?!?  You can snag our family banana pancake recipe below... and yep.  these are dairy + gluten free (plus, 4yr old approved!)

GROCERIES:

  • 2 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 1/2 cup of gluten free flour 
  • 1 tbsp of baking powder
  • 1 tsp of sea salt 
  • 1 1/4 cup of almond-coconut milk, unsweetened
  • 1 egg, whisked 
  • 3 tbsp of coconut oil, melted or butter from grass-fed cows 
  • Spices:  2tsp of cinnamon, dash of ginger 

NOW WHAT? 

  1. TID BIT:  I like to make it a game to use as FEW dishes as possible... so I tend to grab a large glass measuring cup to mix all the ingredients in!  
  2. Place the melted oil/butter in your measuring cup or mixing bowl.  Whisk in the egg. 
  3. Add the non-dairy milk to the butter/egg mixture and whisk thoroughly.  
  4. Sift the flour/baking powder and spices into the liquid mixture... mix well. 
  5. Add the mashed bananas into the mixture... and the pancake batter is MADE!
  6. Take out your griddle... grease it up and turn it on (~300F).  Spoon out the batter onto the griddle.  We make small pancakes... so about 1/4c for each pancake (or one heaping spoonful).  
  7. Brown on both sides... and serve HOT! 

We tend to top our pancakes with blueberries... and maple syrup!  

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Sources: 

  • Book:  Crazy Sexy Juice by Kris Carr 
  • Website: https://www.moneytalksnews.com/10-foods-you-shouldnt-buy-organic-and-12-you-should/
  • Website: http://www.foodmatters.com/article/25-powerful-reasons-to-eat-bananas
  • Website: http://www.youbeauty.com/beauty/bananas-beauty-recipes/

Other

A few other tips we learned about bananas...

  • Remove a wart by placing the inside of a piece of banana peel against the wart and taping it in place.  Found this on Food Matters website... is it true?  We never tried!  
  • Rub the inside of a banana peel on your leather shoes or handbag and polish with a dry cloth for a quick shine.  This does work... although, it's a wee bit messy!  

Check back soon for more recipes using bananas, here!

 

Got any recipes or tips using bananas... jot them down below, I'd love to hear! 

love + gumption.

a. 

Brain + Gut Health Explorer