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Banana - nutrition and storage tips

nutrition and storage tips

Banana nutrition and storage tips

For something that tastes so good, bananas are surprisingly healthful. One medium banana contains about:

100 calories
1 gram of protein
Less than a gram of fat
27 grams of carbohydrate (including 14 grams of sugar and 3 grams of fiber)

15 percent of the daily value for vitamin C, 20 percent of the vitamin B6 and 20 percent of the potassium.

Buying:

Select firm bananas; avoid any with large bruises or dents; reject those with any opening in the skin. Bananas with relatively little stem attached -- single bananas on produce tables are often like this -- will deteriorate more rapidly. Grayish, dull-looking bananas were kept too cold and won't ripen well.

There is no quality or flavor difference between big bananas and little ones; choose the size you like. But for their size, choose plumper rather than skinnier bananas; they will ripen better.

Storing:

Hasten ripening by enclosing bananas loosely in a paper (not plastic) bag. For even faster ripening, put an apple in the bag.
To prevent further ripening, ripe bananas can be refrigerated for as much as a week. The skin will blacken, but the banana inside is unaffected.

If your store frequently has only green bananas, buy some anyway and start a cycle that will keep you in ripe bananas: put them in a loosely closed paper bag to contain the ethylene they generate, thus speeding their ripening. As soon as they are ripe, refrigerate them. That will keep them ripe for eating (although the skins blacken) while you ripen a new batch of green ones.

Cooking:

A mashed banana is about 1/3 of a cup. A pound of bananas is about three.

To prevent banana flesh from darkening after the banana is peeled (when using it in a recipe), sprinkle with lemon or other citrus juice.

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