Thursday, October 06, 2005


Banana Soup

After you delve into something as tremendous as pickle soup, the world opens up to you. You are suddenly awakened to the endless possiblities of soup and its hearty companions stew, chowder and bisque. Next thing you know (or, in this case, next thing I knew) a foray into banana soup doesn't seem like such an odd endeavor or even so big a deviation from the norm. I mean, I had the ripe little banana-beauties on hand, so I went ahead and whipped together this soup (in about 12 minutes.) in an effort to continue pushing the boundries of dinner. It's got a lot going for it, in that it is outrageously flavorful, creamy and robust, tangy (the lime did that) and has a good spicy kick. It also was sweet. Crazy, banana-flavored, coconut-milk-drenched sweet. An interesting and unexpected twist that I liked.

As a person who doesn't eat bananas (they make my mouth itch. I know, I know, too much information) it was still something I wanted to gobble up, figuring once they were cooked the negative effects would be, well, negated. Of course, I was wrong, but if you dont have such a (tragically pathetic) problem, I highly recommend this simple dish as an excellent starter on a brisk autumn night. It is a lot like a curry (I'm guessing due to the combination of coconut milk and curry powder) that is equally awesome over some fragrant jasmine rice or some thai-stick noodles. Try it, and enjoy!

1 shallot, diced
2 cloves garlic, diced
2 ripe bananas, sliced into thick rounds
2 stalks celery, sliced*
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 lime, zested
1 lemon, zested
1/2 cup coconut milk
2 cups water (or chicken stock)
1 chile pepper, minced
Parsley or cilantro for garnish

*Not all the ingredients were photographed

In a medium sauce pan, saute the shallot and garlic in the vegetable oil over hight heat until just browned. Add the curry powder, celery and banana and stir for a minute, trying not to break up the banana too much. Add water (or chicken stock) and salt. Stir to combine. Let the soup come to a gentle simmer and cook for 4 minutes to soften the vegetables. Add the coconut milk and the lemon and lime zest, remove from heat and serve.

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"Ten Washington, D.C.-area residents filed a class-action lawsuit against milk suppliers and retailers Thursday, asking that labels be required on milk sold here warning consumers of the effects of lactose intolerance."

Q. If you had fifty bananas in one hand and twenty-five pounds of ice cream in the other, what would you have?
A. Really big hands.

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Very interesting! I saw another recipe for some sort of Thai-influenced banana soup this week and was intrigued. I'm glad to hear that bananas are good in soup.
Never in my life have I considered the possibility of banana soup. Thanks for bringing it to my attention. Very interesting!

shouldn't that be VEGAN banana soup?
LOL. It WAS vegan! I used water...
I'm telling you, I'm on a roll...
i know what you mean about being on a roll
i can't help thinking about tricking fred some more,
I made him some great vegan roasted peppers
but he ate them with some saucisson sec so that doesnt count!
Alas... sigh... I can't do banannas. Not only do they make my mouth itch, but they make my throat and stomach recoil. Can't do it, no matter what the preparation. But it does sound lovely, and props to you for overcoming the bananna hurdle! I might try it with pumpkin instead of the offensive yellow fruit.
Wow! I have never heard of or considered a banana soup but it sounds terrific! I very much want to try it.
Im so happy to have found a recipe for banana soup on the net! I spent the summer living in northern Tanzania and my family made me this soup at least once a was my favorite dish in the region. Thanks for the recipe!
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