Fruit

Banana and Peanut Butter

Second daughter has become fond of peanut butter and banana sandwiches. Thought they sounded good when I described eating them as a kid. Most people are horrified. I don’t really eat those now, but I love PB and banana together… small gob of PB on each bite of banana. The flavors are completely natural together, in my opinion.

Sadly, peanut butter can give me severe indigestion. Sadly, bananas can give me severe indigestion, only more so. Which makes me wonder if my son gets his banana allergy from me, since the way he reacted to banana was mainly digestive, but over the top. I wouldn’t be surprised if that’s essentially a minor allergic reaction on my part.

Anyway, anyone else out there love peanut butter and banana? How about other unusual combos with peanut butter, on bread or not?

Banana Cream Pie

I’d never made it before, though it’s something I’ve always loved. Recently I bought various flavors of pudding on the idea the kids would like it, it’s cheap, we always have milk and, at the time, still had to worry about it all getting used without spoiling. On the banana pudding package it talks about making pie.

So I eventually spent 98¢ on a premade graham cracker crust, made a point of buying banana, even though they’re optional, and spent 99¢ on Cool Whip late this afternoon, even though it’s optional. I’d intended to make it this afternoon, early enough to have ample chilling time so we could have it right after supper. Ended up not doing it until the kids were in bed. It got less than two hours of chilling before we ate a couple sloppy pieces of it. Yum!

I used the traditional pudding you cook, which I think I should have let boil slightly longer so it would set better. That poured in the crust after sitting in the pan several minutes per the box instructions. I wasn’t sure about whether to add the banana then or later or what. I took a chance, sliced one up and covered the top, then refrigerated it while the Cool Whip sat out to thaw.

Later I spread an ample layer of Cool Whip over the top and learned why owning a pie server might actually have merit. Then back in the fridge. It tasted amazing, messy or not. The girls ought to love it tomorrow, whenever we get around to it, as there is a big graduation party to attend.

So. Any better ideas or advice on making banana cream pie, or other simple pie-like or pudding-based treats?

Moroccan Carrot Salad

[Edited]

I mentioned in my intro post that I might repost past stuff from the other blogs. I’d stumbled across a Moroccan Carrot Salad post from June 25, 2006, and wanted to remind myself I’d intended to experiment with the recipe. It’s summer, or at least the weather deities believe it should be in these parts, so now’s the time.

Last night I made Moroccan Carrot Salad, as seen on the rec.food.recipes newsgroup. It sounded intriguing and I figured it would supplement our contribution of mass quantities of beverages to my grandmother’s birthday party today.

I upped it to two pounds,¦ highly approximate on the carrot front, as it was the end of a 3 lb bag and part of a new 3 lb bag. We’ve been going through carrots lately, cooked and in salads. Sadie loves carrot sticks, though it’s freaky when she chipmunks them and spits them out an hour later in favor of eating something else.

I bought a real lemon on my trip to the Farmer’s Outlet, with no clue how much juice a lemon produces. It turned out to be exactly the needed 4 tablespoons. Cool.

Having no idea what orange blossom water even was, but being intrigued by the idea of a slight orange tinge, I added some juice squeezed from an orange section. That, maybe a tablespoon, was too much. The half cup of extra virgin olive oil seemed to be too much, too.

I was unimpressed right after it was done and well stirred together. It was sour/oily/orange enough then that I added two extra tablespoons of honey.

After sitting overnight, it’s good. Not fantastically amazing, and still needs to be tried with variations to make it more to my taste (might be as simple as adding more ginger and/or cinnamon, of which I added almost none), but sort of tangy, sweet and nutty at once. Sadie seems to like it a lot. Deb likes it but thinks the lemon and honey taste like they’re doing battle. Indeed. I suspect it’s going to be a matter of taste, who likes it a lot or not so much.

For convenience, here’s the actual recipe as I originally saw it on Usenet and used it in slightly modified form, all credit the the source link:

Moroccan Carrot Salad

1 lb sweet carrots peeled and fine grated/fine shredded
1/2 cup light or dark raisins
2 Tbsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp honey
1/4 cup olive oil
1 Tbsp orange flower water or to taste
cinnamon and powdered ginger to taste
salt and pepper to taste

The orange flower water adds a delicate and exotic orange flavor to this different but pleasant tasting salad. I serve the salad in a dark blue serving bowl for a striking appearance. Mix all together and adjust flavoring ( honey, lemon spices etc. ) to taste. Chill very well. Garnish with fresh mint. Yield 4 to 6 servings. Multiply recipe as needed.

(And yes, I did use a blue bowl, which coincidentally happened to be my best option for one-bowl prep and serving. It is a nice visual.)

I’m thinking that allspice might be another flavoring option, besides ginger and cinnamon. Indeed, allspice is one of those things I use surprisingly often, now that I have some. Not in the traditional ways – for instance, you can taste allspice if you eat a blueberry cake donut from Dunkin’ Donuts – but as dashes or pinches in things that could use a flavor adjustment.

When I get around to trying this again, I’ll make a small recipe, just for us. It was kind of risky, making an unknown item for a crowd.