A superfood for cooking: banana flour
Banana flour is a superfood known for a long time in Africa and America: find out how to use it in cooking and all its properties.
The list of superfoods grows seamlessly. And if you are also a fan of these healthy, natural foods, rich in nutrients and energy, know that there is a new entry: banana flour . Which is not so new, considering that it has long been produced and consumed in Africa and Jamaica, as well as in America; only for about a year, however, it has also been conquering European countries – including Italy – thanks to its numerous virtues.
First of all, there is no trace of gluten in banana flour and this is the main key to its success. It represents a valid alternative to wheat flours and this means that celiacs have an extra arrow in their bow. It also contains low fat, is rich in fiber and antioxidants , helps keep cholesterol and blood sugar levels within the right limits, relieves stomach pains, can also be safely consumed by diabetics. Furthermore, it protects the colon and prevents colorectal cancer, contains mineral salts (potassium above all, of course), vitamins, folic acid.
How it is produced
Banana flour is mostly obtained from green bananas . The latter are peeled, cut into small pieces, left to dry and then ground. The whole process traditionally involves exclusively manual work ; however, large-scale production has resulted in the use of auxiliary tools including, for example, the electric grinder and the food dryer.
The flavor and texture
Banana flour is very delicate and, to tell the truth, the typical flavor of the fruit is felt slightly. If it is eaten cooked, it becomes sweeter. Thanks to its content of resistant starch (which in addition to reducing the glycemic index facilitates intestinal transit and even prevents the accumulation of fat on the abdomen) it has a consistency similar to that of soft wheat flour and corn starch.
How to use it in the kitchen
The heat destroys resistant starch and this is the reason why many simply consume raw banana flour , adding it to smoothies , smoothies but also soups and sauces . If you’re not interested in starch instead, you can really go wild. Start from the assumption that, as we mentioned before, this flour can replace the classic wheat flours and therefore be used for the preparation of numerous sweet recipes, as long as they do not provide for leavening. With dry biscuits and pancakes , for example, you get really noteworthy results. Also try to use it to dopuddings .
Where to find it
Banana flour is now easily found: just go to a shop specializing in organic foods or one that sells products from distant lands. Alternatively, it is possible to point to the web and in this case the search work is considerably simplified. But what is the price of this super food? The figures involved are high. On Amazon, for example, a 450-gram bag costs a whopping 18 euros .