Okay, I know that sounds harsh. Organic farming is still widely-acknowledged as being better for the soil and water, so organic bananas DO provide a benefit.
If your specific concern is the ingestion of pesticides, bananas are a low-risk produce item. My daughter loves bananas and can eat 1 a day herself, so I bought them a few times at our organic foods store...for $.99/lb, roughly twice what they go for at our other market.
Although non-organic bananas are treated with pesticide, the sprayed pesticides remain on the skin, leaving the fruit 'safe' for consumption. Bananas have appeared on multiple lists of "XX number of foods you don't need to buy organic" including this one at The Daily Green and this one on MSN Health & Fitness (thanks for the link, Andrea!). Paying twice as much for no health benefit...not worth it on my budget!
Another way to save on your banana grocery budget is to REDUCE your waste. I have been guilty more than once of letting the last two bananas go brown and then they are slipped into the garbage (*gasp!*). Here are two great ways to prevent yourself from committing this most heinous produce sin.
1. Reduce your waste by extending the life of your produce. I have not yet tried this method, but am looking forward to trying the Green Bags recommended by fellow-blogger Chele.
2. If you still aren't able to eat your 'nanas before they turn all brown and blotchety, then for heaven's sake make Banana Bread!
This is the recipe I use - an amalgamation from several cookbook recipes.
Emily's Best Banana Bread
- 3 or 4 overripe mashed bananas, well-mashed
- 1/3 cup melted butter
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup whole-wheat flour
- 1 tsp baking soda
- pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 350 and butter a loaf pan.
Mix together butter and mashed bananas in a large bowl. Add sugar, eggs and vanilla and stir until mixed in. Slowly stir in the dry ingredients until just blended. Pour into buttered loaf pan and bake 45 - 60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
Cool loaf in pan on the cooling rack for 15 minutes, then take the loaf out of the pan and allow to cool on rack.