1. When buying pineapples, first check the leaves to see if they are fresh. The leaves should be green, firm, and not limp or brown. The leaves should be easy to pull out of the fruit. Avoid buying pineapples with soft spots, which indicate that the fruit is not ripe. 00:14
2. To break down a pineapple, lay it on its side on a cutting board. With a chef's knife, cut off the bottom root, then cut off the pineapple’s leafy top. 00:43
3. To remove the tough outer skin, place the pineapple cut-side down on the cutting board. Looking down from the top of the pineapple, notice where the skin ends and the flesh begins. With the chef’s knife, carefully slice off the skin in thin strips, following the contour of the fruit. Rotate the pineapple after each cut. Use a gentle back and forth, sawing motion, being careful to keep the hand stabilizing the pineapple away from the blade. 01:17
4. To core the pineapple, cut it in half, starting from the top of the fruit. Take one half and set it flat on the cutting board, cut-side down. Cut down the center of the pineapple, through the tough core. Stand one of the pineapple quarters up on its flat end and cut down through the piece, removing the core. Discard the core with the skin and slice the pineapple as desired. 01:48
What You'll Need
- Chef’s knife
- Cutting board
In many languages, pineapples are called “ananas,” based on their scientific name, Ananas comosus. However, in English the fruit is called “pineapple,” because early European explorers in South America thought the fruit looked like a pine cone (also called pineapple at that time) and named it accordingly.
Pineapples are sometimes called the King of Fruit because only the wealthy, noble classes in Europe could afford to buy or grow them.
Pineapples are an excellent source of manganese, which aids metabolism. Raw pineapple juice contains an enzyme called bromelain, which breaks down protein and can be used as a meat tenderizer. Pineapples are also very high in vitamin C, containing 131% of the recommended daily value in just a single, one cup serving.
Chef Bryon talks briefly about how to choose a ripe pineapple. To learn more about picking ripe produce, visit Chef Kelly Boyer's "How to Choose Ripe Fruits and Vegetables" tutorial located at the bottom of the page.