I tore it open, hoping that the pale yellow exterior was just a deceitful façade. Surely the bunch of bananas I had bought days ago ought to be ripe by now. The fruit’s pallid skin and green top might be hiding a sweet, creamy secret. I bit hopefully into the banana, only to discover a slightly firm, tasteless teaser.
Instead of mourning the loss of the mangled fruit, cut before its prime, I decided to bring it back to life. I cut the banana into slices, melted a bit of coconut oil on a nonstick skillet, and grilled the stubborn, colorless rounds until they yielded to the heat of the pan and turned golden brown and creamy. The shy flavor of the under-ripe banana turned confident and bold after I cooked it, boasting a toffee-like sweetness with a hint of caramel bitterness. The texture is phenomenal. The caramelization process forms a thin crust that provides a crisp contrast to the dreamy, melty interior. I now had an impressive, yet simple, topping for pancakes, oatmeal, or yogurt. I will never scorn the sallow face of an under-ripe banana again.
What you need
- 1 banana, slightly under-ripe, cut into ½ inch rounds
- 1 tsp coconut oil
What you do
-Heat coconut oil on medium low heat until it melts. Add banana rounds and cook on one side until golden brown, 2-3 minutes. Flip once, and cook on the other side 2-3 minutes more.