Banana fritters are a type of dessert made by coating or incorporating bananas in a sweet batter, then frying them in oil. Most banana fritters are bite-sized, and can be made either with whole banana segments or mashed fruit formed into round balls. The fritters are enjoyed by many different cultures, from the Caribbean to Southeast Asia. Most every country that grows bananas has a recipe for banana fritters.
In general, any food that is battered and fried in small pieces is known as a fritter. A banana fritter is simply a banana prepared in this fashion. Most batters involve egg, flour, and sugar but may also involve spices, seeds, or honey.
Banana fritters popular in Caribbean cuisine typically involve mashed bananas. These sorts of dessert fritters are usually relatively smooth in texture. They require ripe or overripe fruits that are peeled and stirred into the batter itself. These sorts of batters are typically sweet and often incorporate cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla flavors.
Caribbean fritters are usually dropped by spoonful into hot vegetable oil and fried. The batter, which is often thickened with milk and egg yolks, tends to retain its shape while cooking in the oil. Fritters are done when the dough floats to the top. These sorts of fritters resemble donut holes in shape, but have the rich taste of bananas.
Fried Banana Bites
• 2-3 large organic bananas
• 1 tsp. baking powder
• 1 ½ cups whole wheat flour
• 1 cup organic milk
• 1 tbs. organic butter
• 2 cups sugar
• Pinch of salt
• Cinnamon to taste (optional)
• Canola Oil
- The first thing you will want to do is heat some oil to approximately 350 F. I usually use canola oil because it’s healthier, but peanut oil will work as well. Just try not to use oil that has a strong flavor to it. Heat enough oil to cover your fried banana dessert, about 2-2 ½ cups, depending on the size of your pan.
- Next, we will work with the dry ingredients. Sift your flour into a bowl. To said flour, add the baking powder, sugar, salt, and cinnamon if you are using it. Combine it well. Now, since the dry ingredients are taken care of, it is time to show the wet ingredients some love. Make a well in the center of your dry ingredients and start adding all the wet ones. Beat it together; you will be looking for a consistency that’s similar to a pancake batter, maybe just a tad thicker.
- In a separate bowl, peel (obviously) and mash bananas to add to the batter. If you would like, you can also chop them, whatever you prefer, but be warned, if you choose to mash them your fried banana dessert will be smoother (again, obviously). Now, add the bananas to your batter and mix. Note: Sometimes, I’ll add two eggs to this batter to make it heavier. If you wanted to do this, add about a half cup of flour to compensate. I usually leave the eggs out though, because I like how light this batter turns out without them.
- To fry, grab a tablespoon and start dolloping the batter into the frying pan. Be careful not to over crowd the pan, because your oil will get cold, and your banana fritters will get all soggy and oily. Also, another thing to watch out for: Don’t make your oil too hot, because then your fried bananas will burn on the outside, and not cook all the way through. They are ready to be removed once they are golden brown on all sides. I usually start with two or three in the pot, and then take them out to see if they cooked all the way through. If they did, great, if not adjust your oil accordingly.
- After frying, sprinkle cinnamon sugar over them while they are still hot. Let it cool just enough to not burn you, and enjoy. They are best served warm.