Banana Chocolate Butter + Beyond Canning Cookbook Giveaway
posted in: Canning & Preserving, Dressings & Condiments        date: 03.23.16

banana butter

I’ve been dreaming of spring and summer- what type of flowers to plant, what changes to make to our raised garden beds, refilling our pantry with homemade jams and pickles. Oh, and you know, having a baby in less than three months. When my friend Autumn’s new book, Beyond Canning: New Techniques, Ingredients, and Flavors to Preserve, Pickle, and Ferment Like Never Before, arrived at my house, that warm weather daydreaming hit full force. Seeing the stunning photos of each recipe made me long for Saturday mornings at our favorite farmers market picking out fruits and vegetables in hopes of putting up some for the cold days of winter.

The book is broken down into three sections: Sweet Preserves, Pickling, and Fermentation. Autumn begins each section with an overview of the tools required and the basic process for each type of recipe. The book is dotted with illustrations, done by Autumn’s boyfriend Paul, that add so much to the aesthetic of the book while also providing a useful visual for the techniques Autumn writes about.

When I first read through Beyond Canning, I was immediately drawn to the way Autumn explains each technique. She breaks things down in a very approachable way, making this book perfect for new and seasoned preservers alike. I’ve never read through a fermenting recipe and thought, “Oh, I could totally do this,” but I felt as if Autumn was in the kitchen with me when I read through the chapter on fermentation. Suddenly, a cooking technique that seemed out of reach didn’t anymore, and that is really the feeling I got throughout the entire book.

So many recipes caught my eye, and I think this book has something for everyone. There are some classics like strawberry preserves and dilly beans, and there are more adventurous recipes like tomato vanilla jam and pickled figs with port and black pepper. The great thing about the recipes Autumn has created is that they don’t require a ton of each ingredient, leaving you open to try some of the more unique combinations without feeling like you’ll end up with jars upon jars of it in your pantry.

The thing I really love about this book is that it is provides ways to preserve things in real-world circumstances. That’s precisely the reason I chose this recipe to share from the book. It’s a great example of how Autumn understands that food preservation happens in real kitchens, by real people who forget to freeze the four bananas on their counter before heading out of town for the weekend (raises hand). Her rescue-roasted strawberry thyme compote recipe, which serves as a way to extend the life of strawberries past their prime, is another perfect example of this.

banana butter

Now, let’s talk about this butter. Clara is a breakfast fiend, so I’m always looking for new things to add to our breakfast rotation. I barely had this off the stove before the smell had Clara in the kitchen asking to lick the spatula, so I was pretty certain it would be a big hit with her. In fact, it was a big hit with all of us. We all love the combination of bananas and chocolate, and I don’t see this lasting long in our house. The butter is smooth and rich and totally reasonable to eat for breakfast (unlike the Nutella I sometimes like to slather my toast with).

If you’d like to win a copy of Beyond Canning, head to the comment section and let me know what food preservation plans you have for this year. I’d love to hear about them! Giveaway will close on Monday, March 28th.
Disclosure: I was provided with a free copy of this book, but all opinions are, as always, my own.

  • COOK TIME: 15 minutes
  • YIELD: 1 scant pint
Ingredients
  • 4 ripe bananas, peeled

  • 1 tablespoon fresh-squeezed lemon juice

  • ¼ cup lightly packed brown sugar

  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • ¼ cup cocoa powder

  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup

  • Pinch of salt

Directions
  • 1

    Break apart the bananas with your hands as you place them into a small saucepan. Add the other ingredients and place over low heat. Stir with a whisk to begin to break up the bananas.

  • 2

    Cook for about 15 minutes, continuing to whisk until the mixture is smooth and the bananas are mostly broken down. Remove from heat. Depending on the ripeness of your bananas, your whisk may be enough to create a smooth purée. Alternately, you can opt to use an immersion blender to create an ultra-smooth purée.

  • 3

    Transfer the banana butter to a pint mason jar and allow to cool to room temperature. Once cool, cover the jar with its lid, then label, date, and place in the refrigerator.

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COMMENTS: ( 27 )
  • Claire

    I’m planning on canning whole tomatoes in their juice. I love having them to use through the winter!

  • vaishali

    I grow lot of tomatoes in my garden and chillies. So i make roasted tomato spicy salsa. Also i can a lot of diced tomatoes

    • Yum! We canned homemade Ro-Tel last year, and I was so sad when we ran out. I’m definitely doing that again this year!

  • Erika

    Last year I started canning for the first time. I made peach vanilla bean jam and canned whole tomatoes. It was so much fun and I only stopped because I ran out of jars! This year I want to try my hand at pickles and more jam varieties.

  • Hayley

    Salsa! I made it for the first time last year and am now hooked!

  • Tanya R

    Would love the cookbook! I got a pressure cooker TWO YEARS AGO for Christmas and its still in the box. (Disclaimer, I gardened by neglect last summer because I broke my foot and couldn’t do anything). I would love to can my tomatoes, and who knows what other fabulous things I could find in the cookbook!

  • Kyla Gatlin

    Congratulations on the upcoming baby! Last year I didn’t get as much done because my 3rd was born. But this year, I look forward to canning the tomatoes that I’m going to grow. Just got my seeds in the mail last week.
    I would love to win a copy of this book!

  • Julie

    I’m so excited because I am moving to a house (from apartment life!) which means I get to plant my perfect garden! You better bet I’m growing tons of cucumbers and making my grandma’s delicious sweet pickles (with onions, peppers, and garlic). So good!!

  • evabakes

    I’ve never canned before but would love to get started!

  • Tamika Adjemian

    I can foods every season; this year I’m looking forward to a bumper crop of Rhubarb to play with 🙂 always looking for bew recipes!

  • Steph

    I like to preserve lemons

  • We’re going to have a garden this year, so I’m looking forward to doing lots of tomato products!

  • Joy Gillick Bader

    So many plans…cucumber pickles, pickled garlic scapes, pickled beets, sauerkraut, grape jelly, tomato sauce, canned peaches, and tons of sun dried tomatoes

  • Michelle

    I love canning! We are also working on our garden this year. So if I can keep the deer away from my veggies, this would be crazy helpful!

  • Strawberry picking starts up soon here, and as usual, we’ll put up pounds of the fresh berries as preserves, pickles, chutney, etc.!

  • Stephanie

    WOW. Why have I never thought of this? That looks delicious. I plan on preserving my bacon jam for gifts (again). I might be thrown out of the family if I don’t!

  • Chrissy Bellizzi

    I think after reading this post, making that Banana Chocolate Butter is happening in my near future!

  • iwilkerson

    Last year I did a pickled cauliflower with turmeric that has been really popular. I look forward to experimenting with new recipes every year! (And perhaps my sauerkraut will work this fall)

  • ikkinlala

    I more often freeze or dry foods than can them, but I would love to learn more canning ideas. I am planning to freeze berries and dry apples, at least.

  • I have been absolutely craving nutella constantly, but I’ve been avoiding it because I don’t want to end up with a 10 lb baby lol. This sounds like the perfect healthier alternative!

  • creep4ward

    I am new to canning but moved into a house with fruit growing nearby (berries, fruit trees) and want to make the most of them. Thanks for the chance!

  • I can lots of fruit jams every year as well as tomato jam. This year I’d like to branch out into pickling veggies, especially okra from our garden.

  • Maria C

    I plan on trying out some new recipes I have with less sugar. Jams and some pickles fresh from the farm.

  • manda

    I hope to make a few jams. We will see how the garden grows.

  • corrie

    I like to make some kind of jam or chutney for presents (and for cheese plates – -yum!), but I’d also like to try some more preserving by fermentation this year as well.

  • Miss X

    I’ve sort of taken a bit of a break from canning, so my plan is to get back into it and maybe try using the food mill I picked up to make a nice smooth blackberry jam when the blackberries start coming out 🙂

  • Dawn Lowe-Wincentsen

    Last year I did spicy everything. Spicy pickled green tomato, habenero jam, salsa, etc. Looking foward to more spicy sweet and sour this year.