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Can You Eat Banana Leaves

Can You Eat Banana Leaves

Can You Eat Banana Leaves

Banana leaves are not eaten directly but they are used in most food recipes since ancient times. They are edible and safe to eat. Most people enjoy banana leaves as an eco-friendly food plate. You may consume banana leaves as an anti-bacterial agent that can possibly kill the germs. Many recipes use banana leaves as a wrapper for cooking.

I am aware of all of the uses that you mentioned above, except I did not realize we could eat the stalks from the plant. The uses in the Ayurveda are not related to eating the products from the banana leaves, but those properties are the main reasons that the banana leaves are chosen over other leaves from plants or trees. In the ancient literatures from different parts of India, a specific reference is made about eating food on banana leaves after any pooja or religious ceremony that may give us a boom in life. Earlier, people followed this eating method on daily basis, but now, people only use banana leaves in certain occasions as banana leaves are deteriorating due to use of unnatural fertilizers in agriculture.

Before the pleasures of modern refrigeration were discovered, people in tropical countries used to prepare food and wrap it with banana leaves in order to keep it from spoiling. In Asian, African, and South American cuisines, banana leaves served as wrappings for keeping rice, meat, or fish, and other foods moist while they were cooked. Banana leaves are a traditional way to serve food in Filipino cuisine, where rice and other dishes are laid on large banana leaves (a salo-salo, reminiscent of a buffet) and all those taking part eat using bare hands (kamayan). Banana leaves are also used to wrap different types of kuehsas (snacks), like nagasari or pisang-kuehsas, and otak-otak, as well as wrapping sticky pressed rice goodies like langitong and lontong.

Nutritional ValueBenefit
Raw Banana Low in glycaemic loadWhich helps to fight the risk of diabetes and maintains your blood sugar levels.
Ripe BananaHigh potassium contentWith each medium-sized fruit providing up to 422 mg.
Banana and their Nutritional Value.

Banana leaves can be steamed and used to wrap food, particularly dried items like cooked rice, in a lunchbox. Steaming rice, vegetables, fish, or meat with banana leaves preserves the flavor and moisture of the rice, while adding no fat or calories. Food wrapped in banana leaves can be barbecued, steamed, fried, etc. Ranging from curries and rice to paneer and vegetables, everything can be wrapped in banana leaves and cooked differently.

Learn why you should food on banana leaves

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Banana leaves are not the only natural plates – a variety of leaves are used by a number of cultures around the world, ranging from bamboo, grapes, and lotus, to maize shells and perilla for cooking, wrapping, or serving. Banana leaves have a number of uses in Asian, Caribbean, and Latin American cooking, ranging from adding flavours by cooking foods in them, to just being used as colorful settings to place plates and festive plates on during a dinner party. In Bangladeshi cooking, banana leaves are used for making paturi, which is marinated and seasoned boneless fresh fish that is steamed and cooked within a banana leaf, then eaten on top of the banana leaf.

South Indian cuisine involves a lot of liquid dishes like rasam, sambar, etc. Banana leaves are water-proof, making liquid foods easier to eat on banana leaf plates. It is also essential to wash banana leaves before using and are waterproof because of their wax coating. This waterproofing property makes the banana leaves an ideal option for the Natural Plate because it is easy to wash them and make use of it.

Clean banana leaves are commonly used as a tablecloth; sliced banana-leaf sheets placed over rattan, bamboo, or clay plates are used for serving food. Incidentally, some local, traditional restaurants called warung makan, serve food using layers of banana-leaf-covered rattan baskets rather than regular plates. When festivals are organised for such large number of guests that it is necessary to purchase such large number of banana leaf plates, in south india, there are some local vendors that sell fresh banana leaves that we can buy and use to serve the food.

You may see the food served on banana leaves during festivals and weddings, because in Indian weddings, there is huge gathering, making it hard for the families on low budgets to have to order so many expensive plastic dishes. In many authentic South Indian restaurants, round disks of banana leaves are placed in a serving tray, with foods such as idlis, dosas, and more placed in them.

If you are from the South in India and wondering why did your ancestors use to eat their food on banana leaves, you may find some interesting information here. From eating bananas like it is for making sinful sweets — bananas are extremely important to Indian cuisine and Indian food. Banana, or rather its plants, are extremely versatile, with each and every part being either eaten or used for making tasty dishes.

Humans generally eat fruits and flowers, but the other parts such as the stalks and leaves are eaten by other organisms. While eating leaves from edible banana plants might not be harmful, the fibers in those leaves makes it hard for humans to chew and digest.

The plant is loaded with natural antioxidants that are also found in green tea — although it is impossible to eat the leaves, natural antioxidants are absorbed in food when it is cooked. Like the ripe banana, green banana is also high in fiber, which helps with digestion and contributes to heart health, leading to weight loss.

Note that we usually do not use the peels of Ripe Bananas in our recipes, instead, we usually use the green skins of Bananas which are going to ripen shortly. The peels will also get thinner and sweeter as they mature, so you might need to wait a couple days to allow your banana peels to develop a few spots.

Even though you are not eating banana leaves, you still can reap significant amounts of similar benefits simply by eating hot, delicious foods inside the banana leaf. You can feed your cows with banana leaves, or you can use them as natural fertilizer in your yard. While some home chefs like using banana peels as a replacement for pulled pork or jackfruit in vegetarian BBQ sliders, a more accessible way to get started using the peels is simply by adding them to your banana bread to give it some fiber.

You could also try using banana flour as a replacement in many baking recipes if you are allergic to gluten. Of course, if the thought of eating all those skins and husks is not really appealing yet, you can always help cut down on food waste by composting it. You can leave new banana plants as is, or, if they are crowded, dig them up and plant them separately.

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Raw bananas are also low in glycaemic load, which helps to fight the risk of diabetes and maintains your blood sugar levels. Bananas are known for their high potassium content, with each medium-sized fruit providing up to 422 mg.

What happens if you eat banana leaves?

The polyphenols, which are known to protect against many illnesses linked to an unhealthy lifestyle, are absorbed by food that is placed on banana leaves. They are also believed to have anti-bacterial properties that could help to destroy infections that are found in food. Feeding on banana leaves is one of the simplest and least expensive methods.

Are banana plant leaves edible?

Although banana leaves are not consumed directly, they have been used from the beginning of time to enjoy meals. People continue to use banana leaves as an environmentally friendly meal plate in various regions of India. Banana leaves serve to envelop the food and dessert ingredients for a number of steamed cuisine preparations.