I’m not sure if this happens to you, but every time I buy bananas for myself it seems I’m not able to eat them fast enough. Consequently, I’m left with a few that are going soft on the counter right this very second. I try not to use old bananas as an excuse to make banana bread every time, because then I’d be left with way too much banana bread. Not that I have a problem with that, but perhaps I’ll hold off until I’m running again, or until rotations start so I have plenty of co-workers to share with =)
Today, I decided to use mine during breakfast. Bananas have more natural sugar in them than many fruits, and thus can be used in the place of honey or maple syrup that many people use to sweeten their morning cereal. I was feeling something a little fancier than just slicing up a banana and throwing it in the mix, though. I wanted something warm and comforting, and decided to grill half of my banana. All that sugar, when set on a hot pan, gets dark brown and caramelized, and makes the banana get nice and soft, which mixes in perfectly to the oat bran. Think about toasting a marshmallow – it’s like that, except with fruit. Speaking of marshmallows, found this at Sam’s yesterday:
Oat Bran with Griddled Banana
– 1/3 cup oat bran
– 1 cup water
– cinnamon and nutmeg to taste
– 1/2 banana, cut into quarters the long way
– 1/2 granny smith apple, chopped into small pieces
– 1/2 cup canned pure pumpkin
– 1T ground flax (optional)
– walnuts to garnish (optional)
Bring water to a boil with a grind or sprinkle of salt.
While water heats up, set a small frying pan to medium high and place banana strips on pan.
When the water boils, stir in oat bran and chopped apple. Cook for 2 minutes. Portion half the oat bran into a bowl, and mix in pumpkin and ground flax. Heat if necessary.
Turn banana strips over when the bottom has browned, and cook until the other side is caramelized as well. Top oat bran with banana pieces and walnuts.
You may remember me saying that I prefer oatmeal to oat bran, but this was actually really awesome and I didn’t wish I was eating oatmeal at all! The tart apple cuts the sweetness of the banana really well, and it was perfectly delicious. I add pumpkin to all my hot cereal, just because it’s an easy way to get an extra serving of vegetables, and it smooths out the texture really nicely. Mmmmmmmm