Monday, June 19, 2006

How to tell if a pineapple is fresh

The pineapple has to be the most dangerous looking fruit.
Just look at it.
It seems to be covered in armour plating. Look at those spikes on its flesh. You wouldn’t want those brushing your side. Feel its weight. You wouldn’t want that dropping on your head. It is more weapon than dessert.

The last thing it seems to be saying is: "Eat me." So how do you tell if it is ripe?

This was the question I found myself asking at the market on Friday. It isn’t like an avocado that you can squeeze at the top. It isn’t like a melon, which after a good push on its crown revels whether or not the fruit is ready. With the pineapple I was ready to be taught.

The lady behind the stall took hold of the pineapple and then pulled at one of the leaves. It came out easily and the leaf had a white base. It was ready to eat. So simple an answer. The picture above shows you what it looks like.

But is it dangerous to give out such information? With this fruit tip out amongst the food faddish public are we going to start seeing bald pineapples in the supermarkets?

It could happen because if you go to a market these days almost everyone is prodding and squeezing the fruit and veg. Going from avocado tip to avocado tip testing for freshness; digging their thumbs into peaches and some even sniffing the herbs.

That’s why you should washing your fruit and veg before eating it. It isn’t the pesticides you should be worried about it’s the germs from the handling they are given by the food cognoscenti.

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