There is something about pineapples and warmer weather that just seem to go together. With the unofficial start to summer only a couple of weeks away, those cravings may start soon, if they haven't already!
Whether you are enjoying a freshly sliced pineapple, adding a few chunks to a refreshing smoothie, or incorporating it into a delicious recipe, we want to share a super-easy and convenient way to slice and dice a fresh juicy pineapple.
Several years ago at Christmas, we were the lucky recipients of a pineapple corer. At first, it seemed like another gimmicky gadget, but let's just say it has become our "go-to" when it's time to slice or chop pineapple. And, even better, it's easy to clean and doesn't take up a lot of kitchen space!
Check out our video to see why we love this handy gadget!
Is pineapple good for you?
This delicious fruit is a great source of manganese (helps with fat and carbohydrate metabolism and helps regulate blood sugar) and Vitamin C. Fresh pineapple is also the only known source of an enzyme called bromelain, which studies have shown to reduce inflammation, joint pain, arthritis, and even inhibit tumor growth!
Where do pineapples come from?
If you guessed Hawaii, you will be surprised that very few pineapples in the U.S. actually come from the Aloha State. At one time, Hawaii was among the largest producers, but it has now fallen far behind other countries such as the Philippines, Brazil, Costa Rica and Thailand.
How do you select a pineapple?
Once they have been picked, pineapples do not ripen or become sweeter.
It is challenging to tell the ripeness of a pineapple simply by its appearance. You want to choose one that is plump and heavy for its size. It should have a bright green spiky crown, golden yellow body and, ideally, a sweet aroma. You want it to have a firm shell, yet be slightly soft when you squeeze it. It is best to avoid pineapples that have bruises, soft spots or dry looking leaves.
While we have also been told to pull out one of the spikes towards the middle of the crown and, if it pulls out easily, it is ripe and ready to eat, this actually has NOT been a good indicator or ripeness for us.
How do you store a pineapple?
Once the pineapple is cut, it should be stored in a covered sealed container in the refrigerator and will keep for another 3-5 days.
Most importantly, what are the best ways to enjoy a pineapple?
You can use the core to add some flavor to a simple pitcher of fruit-infused water! Add the pineapple core, sliced lime or your favorite fruit to a pitcher of water. Keep it in the refrigerator and enjoy a cool glass of water with a citrus kick!
And, of course, there are so many incredibly delicious, mouthwatering, easy-to-prepare pineapple meal ideas on Eat REAL America!
Easy Pineapple Salsa - according to an Eat REAL America member, "This is the bomb - so yummy we could eat the whole bowl!" And, our daughter took this to a class party at school and the kids ate it all and wanted more (so it's definitely kid-friendly).
You can also enjoy some of these amazing meals...
...and so many more!
What are your favorite ways to enjoy pineapple?
We hope this helps make it even easier to enjoy pineapple in your REAL meals!