No, I haven’t lost my mind. You can eat banana skins! In the West, we’re generally unaware of this, but in South East Asia, banana peels are often used to make delicious curries and chutneys.
Cooked banana skins are actually really yummy. Plus, throwing them away instead of eating them is essentially just… throwing money in the bin.
You may as well eat the food you’ve bought. Right?
So, back to banana peels. Unlike the actual bananas themselves, banana skins are savoury. They make a great snack – fried until crispy, with a little garlic, salt and chilli powder. You can also sprinkle these crispy fried peels on top of curries or on sweet potato mash.
Under-ripe skins are best for pickling, whereas you can make a delicious banana tea by boiling over-ripe banana skins with cardamom and vanilla.
But the perfectly ripe skins are really good in curries. Curries are generally a great way to use things up actually; I’ve previously used blood orange peels to make a tangy orange curry, for example. But the savoury banana peels give a great depth of flavour, which you can either use as a base for a vegetable curry or just enjoy on its own.
Prep time: 20 mins
Cook time: 35 mins
4 banana peels, washed thoroughly
1 actual banana, mashed
1 tbsp garlic oil
1 onion, diced
1 tbsp curry powder
1 apple, peeled and finely diced
1 squeeze of lemon juice
1 cap full of apple cider vinegar
500mls veg stock
1 handful fresh coriander
1 fresh red chilli, de-seeded and sliced (optional)
Top and tail the banana skins, removing the ‘woody’ parts. They can be composted. Then, slice the banana peels into thin strips, and cut these strips to approximately 2 inches in length.
Heat a large frying pan on a low heat. Fry the onions in the oil until softened and then turn up the heat to medium and add the banana peels. Fry these for 5 minutes and then add the apple and the curry powder. Coat the apple and banana skins in the curry powder and fry for a further 5 minutes, adding a little water if it starts to stick. Then add the vegetable stock, lemon juice and cider vinegar. Allow to simmer for 20 minutes or so, until the liquid has reduced. Add the mashed banana at this point, as this well help to thicken the sauce.
The lemon juice and cider vinegar should balance the sweetness of the banana.
Serve with fresh coriander and boiled rice.
NB: I did put a couple of banana slices in for the pictures, just to give a visual indication as to what was in the curry. You can do this if you want, but it does make the curry a bit sweeter, which I personally don’t like as much.