Who needs store-bought popsicles when you have fruit to freeze? Ripe bananas are soft enough to be split with a butter knife, so kids of all ages can help cut the bananas into pieces before rolling them in melted chocolate and chopped peanuts. This recipe comes to us from Phoebe Lapine of Feed Me Phoebe.
Cooking Tip of the Week: To keep bananas fresh, wrap their stems with a small piece of plastic wrap. This prevents the ethylene gas that the stems release from ripening the rest of the banana too quickly.
Food for Thought: How come bananas are so squishy at room temperature but become hard once they’re frozen? The answer has to do with the science of freezing. Everything is made up of molecules, and even though we can’t see it, the molecules move around a little bit! Cold temperatures make the molecules slow down and link together, just like if you were linking elbows with two friends. This makes the cold item, whether it’s a banana, water, or anything else become more solid and less mushy!
Family Dinner Conversation Starter: What is the most interesting thing that you learned today?
Together: Prepare a baking sheet with a layer of parchment paper. Cut each banana into 3 equal sized pieces. Gently slide the popsicle sticks through the center of every piece of banana. Transfer the bananas to the parchment paper-lined baking sheet.
Adult: Place the peanuts in a food processor and pulse until finely chopped, or chop them by hand using a knife. Transfer the chopped peanuts to a pie plate.
Together: Place the chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl and melt in the microwave, checking to stir the chocolate every 30 seconds. Add the peanut butter and stir to combine. Transfer the chocolate-peanut butter mixture to a tall glass.
Kid: Remove the bananas from the freezer and dip in the chocolate one by one so that the banana pops are almost completely covered in chocolate. Roll the top half of each banana in the chopped peanuts and return the chocolate-peanut coated banana pops back to the baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Repeat with the remaining banana pops and return them to the freezer for at least 2 hours and enjoy!