Cutting Fresh Pineapple

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Maybe you’ve noticed your grocery store featuring fresh pineapple specials. While fresh pineapple is available all year long, now (from April through May) is the prime pineapple harvest time in the tropics. That means you can get some of the best quality pineapple at the best prices. Jan and I are taking plenty of advantage of the good buys.

If you’ve shied away from cutting up the whole fruit in the past, here are step-by-step photos to show you how easy it is. We offer two options for cutting: serving it in quarters, or cutting it up for slices, wedges, or tidbits.  We know it’s tempting to buy the fruit already cut up, but by doing it yourself you know how freshly cut the pineapple is and that it hasn’t been sitting around. Plus, you’ll save money.

Quartered Pineapple

1. Using a large chef’s knife, lay the pineapple horizontally on a cutting board and cut the pineapple in halve lengthwise, including the top. Next, cut the two halves in half again, making lengthwise quarters.

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2. Loosen fruit from the peel by sliding your knife between peel and fruit, using a sawing motion. Next, cut fruit crosswise into wedges. Serve as is, topped with chopped fresh berries or other fruit, if desired.

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Slices, Chunks, or Quarters

1. Using a large chef’s knife, lay the pineapple horizontally and crosswise cut off the top and bottom of the pineapple.

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2. Set the pineapple upright. Using the same knife, cut vertically, removing a strip of peel about 2- to 3-inches wide. Repeat removing strips around rest of pineapple.

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3. Lay pineapple horizontally on cutting board. You’ll notice that the eyes remaining on the pineapple meat show up in diagonal rows on the fruit. Make diagonal wedge-shaped cuts into the fruit to remove the eyes; discard.

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4. Cut pineapple meat crosswise in desired slices. To make chunks or tidbits, cut slits ½- to 1-inch apart on each slice to the center core of the fruit. Place the slice in one hand; with other hand, break off the pieces into chunks or wedges. Discard core.

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