We all go to the grocery store and stock up on our family favourites. Bananas are one of the most consumed fruits in the world; so chances are you are buying them….but how much do you really know about this fruit? For starters, did you know every year on the third Wednesday in April Banana Day is celebrated? Let’s celebrate by learning about the banana, different purposes a banana may have and what delicious treats we can make using bananas!
Did you know?
- Anatomy of a Banana: Because its trunk is made up of leaves instead of wood, the banana plant is actually considered a giant herb. A cluster of bananas is called a hand and the individual bananas are called fingers.
- Harvesting: Bananas are harvested green and they continue to ripen as soon as they have been picked.
- Monkeying Around: Struggling to open a banana whose top has gone soft? Open the banana from the bottom, that’s what monkeys do.
- Fair Trade or Organic Bananas: These bananas may cost a few cents more but the tiny splurge makes a difference. The money goes toward ensuring better conditions for industry workers.
- Ripening stages: As the banana ripens, its starch converts to sugar. The riper the banana, the creamier and sweeter it tastes. Banana ripeness has five peel color stages:
- Yellow with Green Tips
- Yellow with Brown Flecks
- Popular Fruit: Bananas are one of the most consumed fruits in the world. In Canada, we import more than 15 kilograms of bananas (about 100 bananas) per person per year.
- How to fix green Bananas: If the bananas you buy are too green, you can put them in a brown paper bag with an apple or tomato overnight to speed up the ripening process.
- Plastic Bags: If you purchase bananas in a plastic bag, or place them in a plastic bag, you should remove them from the bag when you get home. Bananas should be out in the open at room temperature to ripen evenly.
You Don’t Just Eat Your Bananas:
- Fruit fly issues? Put a piece of ripe banana in a container and add a half pressed lemon or a splash of cider vinegar. Cover with Plastic wrap and pierce holes in the film with a toothpick. The flies will be attracted to the smells and, once trapped, won’t be able to escape.
- Size up: Keep in mind next time you are making banana bread: one medium banana yields ½ cup of puree.
- Send a Secret Message: Surprise children with a secret message written on their banana. Simply etch you message or design into the skin using a needle without piercing the skin. Come lunchtime the surprise will be revealed.
- Got a Wart? Remove a wart by placing the inside of a piece of banana peel against the wart and taping it in place.
- Shine that leather: Rub the inside of a banana peel on your leather shoes or handbag and polish with a dry cloth for a quick shine.
- Stop That Itch: Rub a bug bite or hives with the inside of the banana peel to relieve itching and irritation.
Try this Delicious Fully Loaded Banana Treat:
- Sweet toppings: chocolate chips, caramels, marshmallows, maple syrup etc.
- Decorative toppings: candies, sliced almonds, coconut shreds, whipped cream etc.
- Using a knife, slice through the banana, along the inner curve. Be careful not to cut through the other side or the two ends of the fruit.
- Gently squeeze the two ends toward each other to open up the slit.
- Garnish with sweet toppings.
- Place the banana in the microwave for 40-60 seconds.
- Add decorative toppings.
Other Delicious Banana Treats:
- Easy Graham Cracker and Banana Chocolate Cake
- Banana, Avocado, Chocolate Smoothie
- Honey Fried Bananas