My intermittent search for the first recipe for banana cake (and I do not mean a plain cake filled with sliced bananas) has led me to discover some interesting banana ideas.
Although I love bananas I have a low level of enthusiasm for bananas in fruit salad (unless eaten immediately, at the pre-brown stage). I definitely do not feel enthusiastic about the idea of banana ‘dressing’ on my fruit salad, but am aware that some of you may get quite excited about the concept. To you I dedicate the following two recipes, taken from Two hundred recipes for making salads with thirty recipes for dressings and sauces, by Olive Hulse (Chicago, 1910)
Mix the juice of two lemons with half a cup of sugar. Mash two bananas and work into the pulp one tablespoonful of olive oil. Stir all together.
Banana and Grapefruit Salad
Peel two grapefruit, and slice, removing all the tough bitter membrane. Line the salad dish with the white leaves of head lettuce, then put in alternate layers of sliced bananas and grapefruit until the dish is full, and pour banana dressing over. Serve very cold.
I am decidedly not enthusiastic about the idea of baked bananas being served up with baked monkey, as the author of The Steward’s Handbook and Guide to Party Catering (Chicago, 1903) alleges is a combination enjoyed in Brazil (‘like our opossum with sweet potato.’) I am, however, quite tempted by the following recipe for duck with bananas, from Standard Paper-Bag Cookery, by Emma Paddock Telford (New York, 1912)
Ducks With Banana Dressing.
Wash with cold salt water inside and out, drain, wipe dry and season lightly with salt and pepper. Make a dressing of toasted bread crumbs mixed with an equal quantity of banana. Cut in small pieces, well seasoned with chopped celery, salt and pepper. Stuff, truss, grease all over, and tie slices of bacon over the breast. Put in a well greased bag, add the juice of a lemon, and a wine glass of sherry. Seal and put in a very hot oven. At the end of fifteen minutes reduce heat one-half and cook for fifty minutes longer.
Quotation for the Day.
A stockbroker urged me to buy a stock that would triple its value every year. I told him, ‘At my age, I don’t even buy green bananas.’