Banana leaves are large with spiked edges and a solid center. Ranging from lime to olive green to dark green, these inedible pliable leaves can measure up to ten feet long and two feet wide. Used for wrapping a variety of food mixtures, the leaves impart a subtle aromatic quality to foods.
Banana leaves are available year-round.
Banana leaves are ideal for wrapping sweet to savory foods. Stuff with poultry, pork, beef, veal, hard-cooked eggs, cheese, vegetables, rice, beans, grits, herbs and fruits. Wrap a favorite recipe in a softened banana leaf cut to size; leave enough room to fold each leaf over to form a pocket; secure with string. Boil, steam, bake, barbecue, fry or smoke with folded side down.
Grown on a banana "tree", which really is a plant of the genus Musa and not an actual tree, huge banana leaves emerge as the banana plant grows. When weather conditions are suitable and are on the warm side, a new leaf can grow weekly.