The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

raw vs. cooked bananas

  • Pin It
johnsankey's picture
johnsankey

raw vs. cooked bananas

Since 2003 all bananas I've been able to get here in Ottawa Canada have been treated with systemic fungicides for banana black leaf streak, and the residues kill yeast when used the way I used to for banana bread (all the liquid supplied by bananas - 14 oz for 4 cups flour). It turned out that even bananas labelled organic had the residues because the exporting countries have no legal definition of organic.


Following on my experiments with raw potato, I tried cooking bananas first (boiling in water), and the yeast was hardly affected at all. I'm told by a chemist friend that most fungicides are deactivated by the heat of boiling, so this makes sense.


Has anyone found that their source of bananas gives no problem with yeast when used at the rate of a banana per cup of flour? If so, I'd like to see if I can buy it here. Banana bread was a Christmas tradition in my family for 50 years before this happened.


John


 

clazar123's picture
clazar123

There must be a difference in "Banana Bread" between here and there. Here, Banana Bread is a quick bread and there is no yeast. I would love to know what your recipe is for your banana bread.Is it a sweet yeast bread? Is it made to eat with any toppings or for sandwiches? Is it a pan loaf?


This recipe is the quickbread version of banana bread here in Wisconsin,USA:


http://allrecipes.com//Recipe/banana-banana-bread/Detail.aspx


 


I'm sorry I don't have any solution for the original problem you posted about and I hope you get a solution soon. It would be awful to have to forgo any form of Banana Bread.

johnsankey's picture
johnsankey

Until 2003 this recipe worked:



mashed banana 14 oz
water 3 fl.oz
sugar 1-1/4 Tbsp
salt 1/2 tsp
flour 4 cup
yeast 1 tsp

Today, I can get only barely adequate rise (110 mm) using 1-1/2 tsp yeast, 2 Tbsp sugar, and total rise time of 3-3/4 hr (custom cycle).

And, now it seems that fungicides are not the problem after all. I contacted a Quebec-based organic standards group EcoCert, they told me of a small organic store in Ottawa that carried Ecuadorian bananas certified by their on site inspections to be genuinely organic, I got some this morning, and just took the loaf out of the breadmaker. Result: the same as with supermarket organic bananas. So, it seems to be a change in the bananas themselves due to the near monopoly of the AAA Cavendish cultivar.

I'll keep experimenting with heat treatments, with supermarket organic - 1/5th the cost of the EcoCert.

John

BTW: usage here is that your recipe is a pound cake, not a bread - "bread" requires developed gluten and yeast. But don't let words separate us!

 

clazar123's picture
clazar123

Are the bananas barely ripe(slightly green),sweet but firm (just yellow) or overripe(definitely browning to all brown))? It may make a difference in the nature of the  liquid produced.


Have you tried the recipe outside the bread machine? Any difference in how the dough develops?

johnsankey's picture
johnsankey

sweet and semi-firm. The dough just develops extremely slowly, it doesn't seem to my amateur eyes to have anything to do with a gluten problem. Bananas are 75% water, and at least 60% seems available to the flour. I focus totally on breadmaker recipes with ingredients available in Canada - my little castle!


 

clazar123's picture
clazar123

Is the yeast old or has it been kept in too warm an environment? Sometimes this happens in the store or in shipping. Does the yeast perform for other recipes?


Speaking of yeast. I noticed you have "1 tsp" for 4 cups flour. That seems to be a small amount and will probably need a longer rise-esp if the kitchem is cooler. Should that be "1 packet"?


HAve any of your other ingredients changed?Granted, you have a very simple ingredient list but even if you use the same brand,sometimes companies change the product. Sometimes it is done quietly and sometimes the package is marked "new" and "Improved" or "better flavor".


Has your water changed? Has your community switched to a different kind of water purification? This would obviously affect any bread you make. Breadmakers usually notice this as a catastrophic change-they can't get any loaf to turn out.


Switching to the equipment-could something be different with your bread machine? Does it consistently perform for other loaves?


Environment can be a factor. Are you making this bread now (meaning lately)? I see where you are in Canada and here in Wisconsin we are having a very unseasonabley cold Easter. All my rise times are "off' for this time of year as it is about 10 degrees colder than usual. Is your kitchen colder than usual for when you make this bread?


Do you have the recipe in grams,perchance? I was going to try a 2 cup loaf. It just makes it easier to scale down a recipe if it is in grams. I have a banana that is just right for this.I like the simplicity of the ingredient list.


 


 

johnsankey's picture
johnsankey

same package even, and everything is working fine for other breads. Kitchen temperature 21C, controlled. Converting using USDA SR17 gives:


banana 392g 70%


water 84g 15%


white cane sugar 15g 2.7%


table salt 3g 0.54%


Canadian AP flour 560g 100%


active dried yeast 4g 0.71%


Normal rise for other breads is 150mm


The flour is 13% protein, equivalent to US bread flour in gluten content, usually 5% more US flour is needed to get same result as with Canadian flour.


John

clazar123's picture
clazar123

I started making the dough before I saw your posting.I took a little liberty with the recipe since I needed the dough for some enriched dinner rolls. I added a little butter and used milk rather than water. I also doubled the yeast. The dough has been rising for about 45 minutes in my pre-warmed oven and seems to be making nice progress. As for flour, I had only a little bread flour left so it is about half bread and about half AP. I was amazed at how much liquid the bananas contribute.And the dough smells delightful!


I'll let you know how they turn out.

clazar123's picture
clazar123

The rolls turned out well and are very tasty! Thank you for posting the recipe. My crumb shot is a little fuzzy-new camera,it's getting late and it's good enough,I hope.


I didn't have any difficulty with the dough rising but I did double the yeast. I don't have any further ideas about your difficulty unless the bananas here are somehow different from your part of the world or something happened to the viability of your yeast.



Janetcook's picture
Janetcook

The following link contains tons of information about baking with bananas....you might find it interesting...


http://www.thefreshloaf.com/node/20460/banana-saga-長篇故事

johnsankey's picture
johnsankey

Excellent link. Many thanks, Janet, I'll follow it up.


John


 

Breadandwine's picture
Breadandwine

Here's another take on banana bread - chocolate and banana loaf.


The combination is a real winner.


Paul