We all know that banana nutrition is one of the most amazing things about bananas. Potassium, magnesium and vitamins B6 and C, bananas are no doubt one of the world’s healthiest fruits. But did you know there’s more than one way to peel our yellow fingered friends?
Yes! Every banana “finger” has a tough, protective outer coat called the peel which protects the delicate white fruit inside. When you look at an individual banana, the tough handle (or stem) at the top of the fruit is where that “finger” joins the rest of the banana “hand”. The banana then widens out and curves down to the brown tip at the other end, which is the remnants of when the banana was a flower.
So now we know all the parts of the banana – let’s see all the different ways to open them!
- Peel from the stem. Most people peel their bananas this way – from the sturdy stem end. However, this can become more difficult as the banana ripens, because the riper the banana, the more flexible its stem becomes. As a banana ripens its skin loses moisture, which causes the skin cells to collapse and makes the skin thinner and more pliable. This explains why the stem of a less ripe banana (with hints of green still on its skin) will snap more readily. To peel a banana from this end, hold the stem pointing upwards as it will be easier to snap it this way.
- Cut the stem first. For banana lovers who love to peel their bananas from the stem, it’s helpful to make a little cut at the point where the stem joins the banana properly – on the inside of the curve. Use a knife to lightly score the surface of the peel, pull back, and you’ll find that the stem splits easily. Then just peel in the normal way.
- Peel upside down. Did you know the “proper” way to peel a banana is actually from the brown tip (that is not the stem end). To open the banana this way, gently but firmly pinch the tip. You’ll find it should split readily in two, though you can always use a fingernail to help the process by carefully levering the tip apart.
- Snap in the middle. A much more unorthodox way to open a banana is to snap it right in half! To do this successfully, hold the banana with the ends pointing downwards. Grasp the banana firmly with your thumbs on top, and fingers supporting the banana below, then push down with your thumbs and pull upwards with your fingers in one swift motion. You’ll hopefully end up with two clean banana halves that aren’t too mushy!
- The banana ‘split’. For this method of opening a banana, you’ll need a sharp knife and cutting board. Place the banana on your cutting board with the ends pointing upwards and then slice the banana lengthwise from the tip to the stem. Next, cut each half in two horizontally, so you have four equal parts of banana. Gently peel the skin away from each part and enjoy.
- The banana twist. We can’t guarantee this method will leave you with a perfect banana – but it’s fun to try! Hold the banana gently, curved down, with a couple of inches of space between your hands. Begin to twist the skin back and forth, just a quarter turn or so. After a few twists, the seams that hold the three parts of the peel together should begin to separate and you can then pull them apart to access the banana.
- Crack it like a whip! Well this is a fun and novel way to open a banana- but it gets the job done! Grasp the stem firmly in your dominant hand, with the banana curve facing towards you, and then make a gesture as if you’re cracking a whip. The stem should snap taking a sliver of peel with it, leaving you with the easy task of removing the rest of the peel.
So there you have it… 7 fun ways to peel a banana! See? The benefits of bananas are not just banana nutrition…. they’re fun to open too! Now don’t forget to grab a bunch of Chiquita bananas next time you’re at the store and try all our ways of opening them. Happy peeling! And before you go….
Why did the banana go to the hospital?
Because it wasn’t peeling well.