I tend to go on retro recipe searches very intermittently; I’ll find dozens, bookmark them, and then (mostly) forget about them until it’s time to cook something “interesting” for the week. They are loosely organized, by whether it’s a dessert or entree or “something else,” by ingredients, or by name. My typical approach is randomly choosing three or four, then forcing Buzz to pick which is least (or most) scary. He tends to browse more carefully, searching for the seriously bizarre.
When he triumphantly discovered this in the list, I was baffled; I couldn’t remember ever seeing a retro recipe for scallops, especially scallops and bananas.
Learning that there weren’t any scallops didn’t really clarify anything.
Learning that this was supposed to be served as a “vegetable” was slightly unnerving.
Speaking of unnerving: is it just me, or is it awkward when your food cheerfully suggests itself as a main ingredient? This illustration is particularly bizarre, since there is a cheerful anthropomorphic banana offering itself for scalloping, but also dragging along a potato and carrot. If the banana’s intelligent enough to wear a hat, doesn’t that imply the root vegetables are also thinking, feeling creatures? (Does it count as cannibalism if a “vegetable” eats a vegetable?)
But hey, what’s a wacky food blog with no wacky food?
How to make BANANA SCALLOPS
Melted fat or salad oil
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1 egg, slightly beaten, or 1/4 cup evaporated milk
6 firm bananas
3/4 cup fine corn flake, bread or cracker crumbs or corn meal
USE ALL-YELLOW OR SLIGHTLY GREEN-TIPPED BANANAS
For deep-fat frying, have deep kettle 1/2 to 2/3 full of melted fat or salad oil.
For shallow frying, have 1 inch of melted fat or oil in frying pan.
Heat fat to 375°F., or until a 1-inch cube of bread will brown in about 40 seconds. Add salt to egg or undiluted evaporated milk. Peel bananas and slice crosswise into pieces 3/4 to 1 inch thick. Dip into egg or milk. Drain. Roll in crumbs or corn meal.
Deep-fat fry or shallow fry in the hot fat 1-1/2 to 2 minutes, or until brown and tender. Drain well. Serve very hot. Six servings.
The proposed menu really needs little commentary:
- Tomato Juice
- Banana Scallops
- Lettuce Salad
- Orange Sherbet
If this is company dinner, I feel bad for the everyday dinner.
We decided to go with the cornmeal option for our banana scallops, since we had some and it tends to just sit around being unused.
One advantage of recipes like this is that the kids get to help (on everything but the frying).
Even tiny hands can cut bananas, since they’re soft enough that a butter knife works fine!
Eggs are riskier, since Mini-Buzz tends to rapidly stir, sloshing things everywhere; he was fairly well-behaved today, though.
Coating the banana chunks in egg, flour, and cornmeal is quick and easy.
Frying is also pretty quick and easy. Normally when you fry things, they start to get brown and yucky as the cooking proceeds oil gets dirty; in this case, the first few were brown and yucky, and the rest were a lovely golden color. (Weird.)
They came out pretty nicely! You’ll recall that last week’s Rice and Cheese Balls had only moderate structural integrity, but the Banana Scallops held together very well. (Basically, this means that Buzz has accidentally convinced me that he’s in charge of frying things from now on. HA.)
Of course, that golden crispy exterior is purely visual, and the real important question is how does it taste…
Meh. If you like cornbread with warm bananas, then this is the dish for you! They might have been better with a finer cornmeal, since they had very crunchy outsides and very mushy insides. (Also, I think the banana pieces were somewhat too long; stick to 3/4 or 1-inch long, so you have single-bite chunks.)
DO NOT save leftovers, which will taste mushy, cold, and unpleasant.
Credit where credit is due: United Fruit Company created this recipe, and it was digitally shared with the world by bluwmongoose on Flickr. I mostly blame United Fruit Company.