How to Choose and Cut Pineapple?
Know About the Pineapple
Pineapple is rich in fiber and calories. It is low in fat and cholesterol. Pineapple fights against cold, strengthens bones and gums, and prevents sinusitis and cancers etc. Pineapples are best eaten fresh and has a variety of flavors – salty, sweet and tangy. The best tasting parts of the pineapple are on the very edge, so getting the cut right is important. For many, choosing and cutting a pineapple may seem a very difficult task compared to most fruits. This post will show you how to cut a pineapple with minimal strain and mess.
Choose the Pineapple
You can know if the pineapple is ripe by smelling it, looking at its appearance and observing the color of its leaves.
Smell the Pineapple
If the bottom of the pineapple smells fresh and ripe (as seen in the pictures below), then the pineapple is ripe. When you press the pineapple, it should still befirm with just a little give.
If the pineapple smells fermented, then the pineapple is overripe. When you press the pineapple, it would be very soft. If the pineapple smells unripe or unsweet, then the pineapple is unripe.
Appearance of the Pineapple
The pineapple should be heavy for its size. A heavier pineapple means a juicier pineapple. The pineapple can have some green on the sides, but should not be completely green (as seen in the picture below). It should be turning golden yellow at the bottom and around the eyes on the sides. Pineapples are ripe if they are well developed with round edges. They should have relatively flat and developed eyes. Avoid pineapples with wrinkled skin, reddish-brown skin, cracks or leaks, mold, or brown withering leaves.
Look at the Color of the Leaves
Choose pineapples with healthy and green leaves (as seen in the picture below). Pineapple is ripe if a leaf can be plucked from the top of the pineapple without much resistance. If a leaf comes out too easily, then the pineapple may be rotten.
Yield. One pineapple yield about 4 to 5 cups of pineapple cubes.
Cutting board Sharp knife Pineapple
Step 2 Make sure that the base of the pineapple is stable before slicing off the fruit skin. Place the pineapple on its side on the cutting board, and cut the bottom/stem half inch of the pineapple.
Step 3 Make the pineapple stand on its side. The golden part of the pineapple is considered to be ripest and sweetest. Start cutting the pineapple skin off of the sides in strips. Be careful not to cut off the ripe and sweet part.
Step 4 Depending on how close you sliced the pineapple strip, you will most likely see many eye spots. When you eat pineapple slices, these eye spots may be bothering you so it is better to remove the eye spots.
How to remove the eye spots
Option 1. You can cut and remove the eye spots by using a pairing or sharp knife (as shown in the picture). You do not waste a lot of pineapple flesh this way, but it is bit time consuming to remove each and every eye spot.
Option 2. You can remove the eye spots using a mellon baller or potato peeler easily.
Option 3. Eye spots usually line up in diagonal rows (in the picture below you can see the eye spots lined up diagonally as shown by the knife). You can cut the eye spots diagonally and remove the eye spots. Once the eye spots are removed throughout the pineapple, the remaining flesh is ready for cutting now into cubes. You will have to lose bit more of the pineapple flesh when you remove the eye spots this way. On the other hand, it takes very less time rather than removing each eye spot one by one.
Place the pineapple on its side and start cutting its sides, from top to bottom, until you are left only with the flesh of the pineapple. Do not cut the strips so deep as to cut away the eyes.
Now, the pineapple is ready to be cut further into cubes or perfect round depending on how you are going to serve it.
Cut the pineapple into quarters length-wise strips. Lay each of the strips down and slice them into cubes/chunks.
Just lay the pineapple cylinder on its side. Cut it into 3/4 inch rounds. If you want pineapple rings, then using a sharp knife, cut the core. You can also use pineapple corers to remove the pineapple core with very less effort. Pineapple corers. Place the pineapple upright and place the corer in the center of the pineapple. With little force, push down the corer until you reach the bottom of the pineapple. You can keep the pineapple core aside for some other uses or discard it. Now, you will have perfect pineapple rings.
Store the Pineapple
A whole refrigerated pineapple can stay good for two weeks. You can refrigerate the pineapple chunks for up to a week in an airtight container. Do not leave cut pineapple out in a room temperature setting. You can freeze cut pineapple for up to six months but freezing pineapples will lose its flavor.
Recycle Pineapple Parts
You can reuse pineapple’s skin for the following:
1. Pineapple Skin Juice
Presence of sun. Put the skin and core of a pineapple with enough water in a container and close it with a lid. Leave out in the sun for several hours until the water turns yellow. Now, strain the tea and serve chill. At home. Boil the skin and core of the pineapple in water for few minutes until water turns yellow. Then, turn off the stove and strain the tea. Serve chill.
2. Pineapple Pot Pourri
3. Pineapple Vinegar
Source. http://www.squidoo.com/pineapple-skin-uses#module165753123 Serves: 2 quarts Total time: 36 hours Make sure your water is filtered, or at least non-chlorinated. Chlorine will kill all the bacteria necessary for fermentation.
- Skin & core of 1 pineapple
- 2 quarts water
- 2 tsp dried oregano
- pinch red chile flakes
Instructions Place all the ingredients together in a large glass bowl or jar. Cover with a cheesecloth to protect from flies. Leave at room temperature for around 36hours. The vinegar should be lightly acidic, with an aroma of pineapples. Skim any foam off the top, remove pineapple pieces and strain the vinegar into clean jars. Close the jars tightly. The vinegar will keep for several months in a cool place.
4. Pineapple Peel Foot Scrub
Source. http://www.squidoo.com/pineapple-skin-uses#module165753123 Blend the pineapple scraps in a blender to form a coarse paste. Apply the paste to your feet and leave it for 20 minutes. Rub your skin in small circular motions.
5. Clean Wooden Cutting Board Use the pineapple skin to scrub and clean the cutting board. Rinse the board using warm water and dry it.
6. Use as a compost
Use pineapple skin along with other vegetables’ skin and form a compost. How to make a pineapple compost? Check http://homeguides.sfgate.com/compost-pineapples-25462.html
Place the pineapple crown in water until you see the roots grow. Now, re-plant the crown in a pretty moist soil, water it everyday, and make it grow into new pineapples in a few years (mostly 18 months).