Garden

The Whole Banana

Photos by Valerie

Tree at the house

I love the tropical vibe of staghorn ferns. Sadly, our collection over here at Casa Rice was looking more sad and droopy over exotic and lush.

stag horns

Just kidding, this is at Lotusland.

I decided to put that old wives’ tale to the test a month or so back, giving my epiphytic friends a little boost courtesy of banana peels. Feeding your ferns these potassium powerhouses gives them a needed boost of nutrients that perks them right up.

Banana Peels for Stag Horns

Tear the peels into thin pieces (or chop them up) and place them on top of the staghorn, followed by a good spritz of water. Those old wives’ continue to amaze me, because it really perked up my stags.

Before banana peels (left), after banana peels (right).

Before banana peels (left), after banana peels (right).

So, you feed the ferns and then have a pile of ripe bananas to feed your family. Originally, I planned on being extra clever and inserting a new banana bran muffin recipe right here. Let’s just say that test recipe went straight to the compost bin. It happens.

Ingredients for banana bread

My goal is always to share the best with you here on the blog, making your time in the kitchen count. Forget those muffins (trust me) and instead try out this tried and true family recipe for banana bread.  I’ve given this favorite a little update.  Delicious and moist, a slice (or two) will give a good staghorn style boost to your morning or afternoon.

Banana Bread

Banana Bread

 

Preheat oven to 350

1/2 cup unsalted organic butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3 large ripe bananas
2/3 cup Greek yogurt
1 teaspoon vanilla

 

In an electric mixer with paddle attachment cream butter and sugar.  Next, add the eggs one at a time.

 

In another bowl, whisk dry ingredients and add them to the butter mixture.

 

Blend well and be sure to scrape the sides of the bowl to incorporate.

 

Add bananas – I just add them whole and let the paddle of the mixer chunk them up, then add Greek yogurt, and vanilla; stir well.

 

Pour into a well buttered 9 x 5 x 3-inch loaf pan or several smaller pans — this recipes yields 1 large loaf or 4 small loaves.

 

Bake 1 hour testing for doneness with a toothpick after 45 minutes. Turn out onto a rack to cool (if using smaller loaves, check after 30 minutes).

 

Note on the banana bread: I have this handy pan that makes four mini-loaves with one batch of batter. From there, I can gift one loaf, eat two (I love a slice toasted with some triple cream smeared on top) and throw one loaf in the freezer for a future drop.  I found one similar to my pan from Wilton here .

Mini banana bread loafs

banana bread