Think pineapples grow on trees? Actually, they grow on the ground. The spiky green part of a pineapple fruit is planted in the ground. After two years, it produces a pineapple fruit. We tend to think of Hawaii as the place where pineapples come from, but most of the pineapples we eat actually come from Asia.
- Pineapples contain bromelain, which helps digestion. Pineapples are also a source of vitamin C and manganese.
- Pineapples naturally tenderize other foods, such as meat.
- Pineapple is delicious eaten fresh, added to fruit salads, placed on pizzas, or grilled. Use it in salsas and sauces too.
- Europeans thought the sweet fruits resembled pine cones, which is why they’re called “pineapples.”
- Pineapples don’t ripen once they’ve been picked. They do become juicier, but they won’t become sweeter. Their color is based more on their variety than their ripeness.
- Pineapples originated in South America. Christopher Columbus found pineapples on the island of Guadeloupe in 1493. Magellan found pineapples in Brazil in 1519 and introduced them to Europe, where they were instantly popular.
- People in Europe built hothouses to grow pineapples there, but found the process difficult and expensive. Pineapples were a symbol of wealth because only the wealthy could afford to eat them.
- In 1903, James Drummond Dole started a pineapple plantation in Hawaii. He started canning pineapple, which made it easier to ship it. Pineapple then became a fruit that everyone could enjoy.
- Manganese: a nutrient that helps build strong bones
- Tenderize: to make tender
Questions and Answers
Question: Should I refrigerate pineapple?
Answer: Store pineapple on the counter and cut it within a day or two of buying it. Refrigerate any leftovers.
Learn how to peel and cut a pineapple.
Visit the Dole pineapple plantation in Hawaii.