Going Bananas For Homemade Cookies

Diana Helfand
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Wednesday - February 23, 2011
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Avenue Q, the highly anticipated multiple Tony Award winning adult musical comedy is coming to Manoa Valley Theatre March 3-20.

Guest director and associate producer Bree Bumatai first saw the musical on Broadway, confirmed it would be ideal for MVT’s intimate stage space, and so MVT became the first community theatre in the nation to receive the rights to the show.

This column is dedicated to Bumatai.

I am always devising recipes to use those bananas that seem to ripen overnight.

These are a great lunch take-along for the keiki, or wonderful with a cup of green or herbal tea for a light snack. They also freeze well if wrapped in foil and placed in a freezer bag. To defrost, leave out for about an hour or so at room temperature.

Both bananas and cranberries are good sources of potassium and fiber.


* 2 1/2 cups unbleached flour
* 2 teaspoons baking powder
* 2/3 cup no-trans-fat margarine
* 1/2 cup granulated sugar
* 2 medium-size ripe bananas, mashed well
* 4 large egg whites, slightly beaten
* 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
* 1 cup dried cranberries
* pecan halves, for tops of cookies (48)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat cookie sheets with cooking spray.

Sift flour with baking powder. In separate large bowl, cream margarine with sugar, add banana and egg whites and beat until well-combined. Add vanilla and stir to combine. Gradually add the flour mixture until all ingredients are wet. Stir in cranberries. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto cookie sheet and press a pecan half on top of each cookie.

Bake for about 10 minutes. Cool for a few minutes on cookie sheets, and remove to wire rack to cool.

Makes four dozen cookies.

Approximate Nutrition Information Per Cookie:

Calories: 100
Fat: 3 grams
Cholesterol: 0 milligrams
Sodium: 50 milligrams

(Diana Helfand, author of “Hawaii Light and Healthy” and “The Best of Heart-y Cooking,” has taught nutrition in the Kapiolani Community College culinary arts program.)

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