Banana Flour – Natural Food Evolution – and some recipes

Natural Food Evolution has a unique product – Banana Flour.
While you may first think this would be banana flavoured, it does not replicate bananas at all really. Being made from green Cavendish bananas and Lady finger bananas depending on the product they do not hold a lot of flavor.
This product was recently rebranded into the Natural Evolution Foods Brand and they are the world’s first and only certified producers of green banana resistant starch and flour!

The have a product range of three items:
• Green banana resistant starch
• Ultimate gluten free baking flour
• Ultimate smoothie mix.

So what do these mean?
Green banana resistant starch – is the highest grade of resistant starch in the world! It is derived from lady finger bananas which have the unique properties of resistant starch at the highest levels in the world. It makes sense that the location of the site and home is QLD, Australia capital for bananas! Lady fingers are rich in vitamins, minerals, dietary fiber and bio-actives. The process of turning these banana into a powder starts by the cold, raw process that derives the product within 25 minutes!
This is ideal for multiple uses including smoothies, mixed in water, baking. It is recommended to reduce your flour by 40% by using this in place!
What are some of the benefits of Green banana resistant starch?
• assist in colon health and prevention of colon cancer
• promote weight loss
• aid in diabetes prevention and treatment
• lower cholesterol
• increased mineral absorption
• boosting of the immune system
• increases antioxidant capacity of foods
• aids in digestion
Ultimate Gluten Free Baking Powder – While the resistant starch can be used in baking, this product is designed specifically for. Made from green Cavendish bananas rather than the lady fingers, this flour replaced others easily at a reduced amount of 25% when replacing normal flours. It is gluten free, with no strong flavor so as not to ‘ruin’ a bake into being ‘banana’ flavoured.
Ultimate Smoothie Mix – Coming in natural, vanilla or cacao to suit your taste preference this is a blend of natural ingredients of resistant starch, fiber, protein and natural flavouring to ensure you can create a 100% natural smoothie for any purpose! The product remains vegetarian and vegan with the protein being pea protein rather than a dairy sources whey. The inclusion of the banana flour also helps to promote a balanced smoothie of nutrients and perfect to help boost digestion benefits, immune system boosting and protein helps to keep you full for longer.

But what is ‘Resistant Starch’ really?
Most carbohydrates in a diet are starches. They are long chains of glucose that are found in various grains, potatoes and other foods such as pastas and cereals. Not all starch that we eat is actually digested. Sometimes a portion can pass through unchanged, meaning it is ‘resistant’ to digestion.
This is what is known as ‘resistant’ starch which functions similar to soluble fiber.
Many studies do show that resistant starch can have health benefits of lowering cholesterol, lowering blood sugar levels, reducing appetite, and aiding in insulin sensitivity.

There are 4 types of resistant start:
1. Type 1 – in grains, seeds, legumes and is resistant as it is bound within the fibrous cell walls.
2. Type 2 – is found in starchy foods like raw potatoes and unripe (green) bananas.
3. Type 3 – is created when certain starchy foods are cooked and cooled. This turns some digestible starches to resistant through a process known as ‘retrogradation.’
4. Type 4 – is man-made and a chemical process formulation.

While that sounds simple, multiple forms of resistant starch can be present in the one foods depending on their process of preparation can change their levels so there is a real science behind it!

How it works? – It goes through the stomach and small intestine undigested, eventually reaching the colon where is feeds the friendly ‘good’ gut bacteria. The ‘gut flora’ (bacteria in the intestines) outnumber the body’s cells by 10 to 1. Where most foods feed the 10% of our cells, the fermentable fibers and resistant starches feed the other 90%! So they are feeding the ‘good’ bacteria. There are hundreds of types of gut bacteria and depending on the number of each, can impact your overall health. So overall, the consumption of the resistant starch feeds the good bacteria, and can improve your overall health!

How do you use?
I have now tried using this is a few recipes and all have been successful!
Including:
– Banana Boat Pancakes within the crumble
– Café Banana Bread

This can be baked, sprinkles, used raw, added to smoothies etc for great versatility! It is high carb, and dryer then flour so less is needed but not ideal to use if on a low carb diet.
The flours have very little flavor to them so I find them to work very well into recipes and not compromise on the flavor! In the past I have swapped flours for quinoa flour and spelt flour which can have their own taste as well. While Almond and other nut meals do not allow to ‘rising’ or ‘sifting’ due to the course nature and create a much ‘wetter’ bake. Then there is coconut flour which is a very dry flour and can cause a very dry bake. I have so far found the banana flour to react somewhere in the middle of coconut flour and almond meal to product delicious bake, not dry or to dense as well as still having a rise factor with some baking powder added!
Why not try it for yourself?

IMG_6438
Cafe banana bread

Makes 1 mini loaf + 2 cupcakes

Ingredients
1 egg
1 banana
1tsp heilala vanilla sugar
1tsp heilala vanilla essence
10 dates chopped
2tbsp SR whole flour
1/2c Food Evolution Banana Baking Flour
2tbsp maple
2tsp instant coffee (dissolved in 1tbsp water)
1/4c walnuts or pecans chopped
2 tbsp milk
1tsp baking powder
1tbsp coconut oil or organic butter melted

Topping; Table of Plenty Original Bircher Muesli

IMG_6431

Directions
1. Line a mini loaf tin. Set oven to 180 degrees.
2. Mash your egg, banana, milk, vanilla, maple, coconut oil/butter, coffee and set aside.
3. Combine your flours, walnuts, sugar and dates
4. Combine both mixes together well.
5. Pour into lined loaf tin, and two cupcake silicon cups. Or all silicon cupcakes or a cake tin.
6. Bake cupcakes for 12minutes and loaf for 22minutes (check with a skewer).
7. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly before moving to a wire rack out of the tin.
Cool completely before storing in an airtight container.

IMG_6433

IMG_6411Banana boat pancakes
Serves; 1-2

Ingredients
The protein bread co pancake mix
1 banana
1-2tbsp toasted walnuts
2tbsp toasted muesli (I toasted Table of Plenty Bircher muesli)
1tsp cacao nibs
1square dark organic chocolate
2tsp coconut oil or organic butter plus more to cook
2tsp honey or maple and more to drizzle
1tbsp banana flour (or almond meal)
1tbsp macadamia meal (or more almond meal or quick oats)

IMG_6412

Directions
Line a tray and set to 180degrees
Position your banana onto a bed made of foil to prevent it falling over. Slice through the top skin and fold open. Slice your banana about three times. Down these slices push your coconut oil and dark chocolate chopped.
Drizzle oven the banana your honey.
Sprinkle your banana flour and macadamia meal over the top of the banana.
Place in the oven and bake for twenty minutes. You can toast your muesli and walnuts at the same time.
With five minutes to go cook your pancakes (I use two pans) as per directions.
Stack up, serve with your walnuts and crumble over top, banana on the side (careful transferring it will be hot!) your cacao nibs and drizzle with maple!

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About nfrain

A passion for a healthy life, body and mind. A discussion of my experiences and thoughts with some tips and tricks along the way.
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