Originating in South America, pineapples grow from spiky cactus-like plants on the ground. Each plant only produces one pineapple per season, but this same plant can fruit for up to 50 years!
Whether you believe pineapple belongs on pizza or not, there is no denying the classic pairing of ham and pineapple. Along with pork, pineapple goes well with chicken, duck and seafood, such as prawns.
It’s no surprise that this tropical fruit is enjoyed in hot countries, where it adds a tartness to dishes like sweet and sour pork, freshness to a fish taco, or some chargrilled sweetness balancing a spicy jerk chicken.
Its fresh, vibrant flavour makes delicious desserts of the chilled variety – think parfait, sorbets and ice cream. This tropical treat also works surprisingly well in puddings and baked goods, from a pineapple upside-down cake to a hummingbird cake.
Pineapple juice is one of the key drivers for pineapple consumption and makes for a refreshing base to smoothies and cocktails; and a wedge of fresh pineapple makes a striking garnish.
Pineapple naturally pairs well with other tropical fruits, such as coconut, mango, passionfruit and lime. It is enhanced by herbs and spices, such as ginger, cinnamon, chilli, mint, coriander, rosemary and sage. Pineapple loves sugar, especially the dark variety, as well as rum and caramel.
Hawaii led the way in pineapple production but has recently been surpassed by Costa Rica, the Philippines, Brazil, and Indonesia.