Creamy, rich, and sweet, bananas are a favourite food for everyone from infants to elders. They could not be more convenient to enjoy, and they are a good source of both vitamins and minerals, as well as fibre.
How to Select and Store Bananas
Since they are picked off the tree while still green, it’s not unusual to see them this colour in the store. Base your choice upon when you want to consume them. Those with more green coloration will take longer to ripen than those more yellow in hue and/or with brown spots.
Bananas should be firm, but not too hard, bright in appearance, and free from bruises or other injuries. Their stems and tips should be intact. Their size does not affect its quality, so simply choose the size that best meets your needs.
While bananas look resilient, they’re actually very fragile and care should be taken in their storage. They should be left to ripen at room temperature and should not be subjected to overly hot or cold temperatures. Unripe bananas should not be placed in the refrigerator as this will interrupt the ripening process to such an extent that it will not be able to resume even if the bananas are returned to room temperature.
If you need to hasten the ripening process, you can place them in a paper bag or wrap them in newspaper, adding an apple to accelerate the process. Ripe bananas that will not be consumed for a few days can be placed in the refrigerator. While their peel may darken, the flesh will not be affected. For maximum flavor when consuming refrigerated bananas, remove them from the refrigerator and allow them to come back to room temperature. For the most antioxidants, eat fully ripened fruit.
They can also be frozen and will keep for about 2 months. Either puree them before freezing or simply remove the peel and wrap them in plastic wrap. To prevent discoloration, add some lemon juice before freezing.