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Thousand Fingers Bananas
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Thousand Fingers bananas look similar to more familiar banana varieties such as Cavendish, but are only 1 and ½ inches long. The skin is green ripening to bright yellow and the flesh paler yellow. Thousand Fingers bananas are seedless. The texture is soft and the flavor is very sweet and similar to the flavor of more standard bananas found in American grocery stores. Banana plants are not actually trees, they are classified as herbs that grow for only one reproductive cycle. The solid green colored Thousand Fingers banana tree grows fast, up to 12 feet tall in just a few weeks. The bunches of fruits grow all along a stem, which itself is 8 to 10 feet long. Each plant produces hundreds or thousands of bananas, as the name suggests.
Thousand Fingers bananas are available year round.
Thousand Fingers bananas (Musa ‘Thousand Fingers’) are one of many existing varieties of bananas. They are also known as Pisang Seribu and Bahasa Melayu. The Thousand Fingers banana plants prolifically produce very small fruits all along the stem.
Bananas such as the Thousand Fingers variety are high in fiber, water, carbohydrates, and antioxidants. They do not contain much fat or protein. When green, bananas have more starch, which turns to sugar as the fruit ripens.
Use Thousand Fingers bananas similar to Cavendish. Eat raw when ripe, cut up into salads, or use baked into dessert recipes. Combine with oats and chocolate in baked goods, other tropical fruits in fruit salads, and peanut butter for smoothies.
The word “banana” may come from the Arabic word “banan” meaning finger. In English, groups of bananas growing together on a stem are called “hands.” Thousand Fingers bananas have many hands growing on one plant.
People have been eating bananas for a long time. The first written references to them come from 500BCE, but were most likely consumed long before then. Today, 100 billion bananas are consumed globally each year. There are more than one thousand varieties of bananas, of which the Thousand Fingers banana is just one. Thousand Fingers banana plants originated in Southeast Asia—Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines. Today, they can be grown with care in colder climates. In the United States, Thousand Fingers bananas are grown outdoors in Florida.