It may come from afar, the banana is one of the fruits that are most often found in our grocery basket. Nutrition doctor Hubert Cormier reveals all his secrets – plus 80 recipes for “bananomaniacs” – in his new book, Completely Banana. Here are five amazing facts to discover along with a completely decadent banana bread recipe.
Yes, from plantain to pink banana, there are sweet ones, which can be eaten raw, and others, more starchy, whose texture is more reminiscent of potatoes and which must be eaten cooked. Hubert Cormier lists 11 in his book, but Cavendish is hands down the easiest – and plentiful – to find in any grocery store.
Even if most of us have the reflex to throw it away, the banana peel is entirely edible. The author of Completely Banana has therefore made the bet to incorporate it into his purees, which he then uses as a base for all his recipes. Plus, once mashed with the flesh using his banana cooking technique (see recipe), the stringy texture of the skin becomes imperceptible, he says.
Many of us peel our bananas by their stem. But we should rather use the other end of the fruit, lightly pinching the black tip of the banana to open it. This avoids breaking it, while getting rid of unpleasant filaments – in addition to being able to hold it by the stem to eat it.
Indeed, one could easily believe that adding sugar to a recipe containing bananas is superfluous, but it has a “superpower” that makes it a key ingredient in making the perfect banana bread. Without sugar, the bread risks crumbling more easily, being dry and not having that colorful and crispy crust that we love so much.
As soon as the bread is cooled and cut into slices, it is best to freeze it immediately so that its texture becomes even softer, recommends Hubert Cormier in his book. The slices then thaw in about ten minutes at most. In fact, it’s the secret to the soft slices served at a certain cafe “whose name begins with an ‘S’ and ends with ‘ks'”, he tells us.
Yield: 1 loaf Prep: 25 minutes Bake: 1 hour
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F). Butter and line with parchment paper a 20 cm x 10 cm (8 in x 4 in) loaf pan.
2. In a bowl, sift and combine the ingredients from section 1.
3. In a second bowl, combine the ingredients from section 2.
4. Using a wooden spoon, stir the mixture of ingredients from Section 1 into that containing the ingredients from Section 2 all at once. Do not overmix.
5. Bake for 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the bread comes out clean. Let cool completely.
6. Meanwhile, place the cheese in a bowl. Using an electric mixer, beat while gradually incorporating the cream. Then add the amaretto and sugar. To book.
7. Cut the cooled bread horizontally into two equal-sized halves. Fill a piping bag fitted with a plain round tip (1A) with half of the frosting, then spread it evenly over the lower half.
8. Place the other half of the bread on top. Spoon the rest of the frosting into a piping bag fitted with an open star (8B or 6B) or flower (1G) tip, then drizzle evenly over the top of the bread.
9. Sprinkle the bread with cocoa. Keep refrigerated.
For 1 loaf
1. Cut off and discard the ends of the bananas.
2. Cut the bananas into pieces of about 1 cm (1/2 inch).
3. In a saucepan, bring all the ingredients to a boil. Cover and simmer over low heat for 10 minutes.
4. In a food processor, grind the mixture until you obtain a smooth purée. Let cool completely.