Since reading this Saveur article about bananas I’ve been scouring my Asian grocery stores for new varieties to experiment with. Initially I was hooked on the baby bananas because it’s really a better amount for a snack or a smoothie, and while similar in texture and flavor to the standard banana (though a little more interesting), you aren’t left with half-bananas hanging around your fruit bowl.
When my favorite White Center grocery store’s mini bananas (called Ladyfinger and Orito) were looking a little overripe I noticed a plumper version labeled “Thai banana” which turned out to be firmer, and sorta tangy, almost tart. I was intrigued and excited. Turns out (upon re-reading the Saveur article) that these are apple bananas, which I’d heard of but never identified.
I’ve been enjoying them plain, and in fruit salads. They have more density and a much more broad flavor range, including tangy tartness. They don’t peel quite as easily as the standard, bred-for-the-masses Cavendar banana, but aren’t delicious things worth the extra work?