Your banana blossoms are ready to eat upon arrival, though there is a bit of nuance to understanding the blossoms’ taste profiles and how they should be consumed. Make sure to taste a small piece of heart or a floret after removing the pistil and calyx (see below) to understand the taste profile of your blossoms. Sometimes banana blossoms are highly astringent and sometimes they are sweet.
Until ready for consumption, store your banana blossoms in the refrigerator, wrapped in plastic wrap or a sustainable alternative container.
When you are ready to begin preparing the banana blossom for consumption, lightly rub a neutral oil, such as vegetable or grapeseed oil, on your hands to avoid the staining sap it contains. Strip away the hard outside petals (these are called bracts) and set aside to be used as serving bowls or discard.
Remove the row of yellow-tipped florets (these would become bananas) from the bracts and immediately place in water with salt, lemon/lime juice or vinegar to avoid browning.
Next, remove the hard inedible pistil (matchstick-shape) and calyx (scale-like petal) from the florets and discard. You must do this for each floret as these are not pleasant to consume. Now is the time to taste a small piece of the blossom to understand the flavor profile.
Now that you have reached the white or pale pink petals that are too small to peel, cut off the stem and discard. Slice in half lengthwise or chop as desired, massage and immerse in water with salt, lemon/lime juice or vinegar for 24-36 hours in the refrigerator to remove bitterness and browning.
Banana blossoms are commonly enjoyed in many tropical dishes, including salads and stir-fries. When ready to consume, remove from water. The flavor profile of your unique banana blossom will guide your recipe development or recipe selection. Sometimes banana blossoms are highly astringent. Be sure to soak the blossom in water with salt, lemon/lime juice or vinegar for 24-36 hours to remove the bitterness. The banana blossom is soft with a tender crunch. If your banana blossom is bitter or astringent, we recommend enjoying it battered and fried or in a stir-fry. This will highlight its tender texture without the bitterness. If subtly sweet, it is ideal for salads or fresh preparation.