Pineapple Eats You!

Christine Albury Updated

If you have heard that 'pineapple eats you' you must have wondered what on earth that means! Here's the explanation behind this bizarre phrase!

‘Pineapple eats you’ - sounds a bit like something out of a horror movie doesn’t it?

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You may have heard before that there are certain enzymes found in pineapples - and papaya -  that eat flesh. But before you begin panicking,  this isn't quite as drastic as it sounds.

In fact, it's something that most people only discover when they want to make jam from these fruits, as the fruits' flesh does not gel due to enzymes they contain.

This post will take a look at exactly what these enzymes are - and why you don't need to worry about them!

Bromelain

Pineapples contain copious amounts of bromelain, a type of enzyme which helps to break tough protein chains. It is found in large amounts in the skin and stem.

For this reason, pineapple makes an excellent marinade, as it really helps to tenderize meat. You do need to avoid marinating for too long, however, as it can cause the meat to fall apart!

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It is the power of the bromelain enzyme that stops pineapples from turning into jam or jelly when combined with gelatin. The enzyme breaks the gelatin down too, so it cannot gel.

One way to overcome this is to use agar-agar as minimizes the reaction that typically occurs.

As the enzyme is so strong, anyone handling large amounts of pineapple should wear protective face wear and gloves, otherwise the enzyme can eat away at the flesh on the hands and face.

You may have even noticed yourself that if you have cut up lots of pineapple yourself that your hands may become dry and flaky. You may even notice little sores! 

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One of our favorite ways to use pineapple is to make an awesome pork stir fry, which produces perfectly succulent and juicy pieces of pork. 

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Paleo Pork Pineapple Stir Fry Recipe

    4 Servings

Ingredients

  • 1 20 ounce can Unsweetened Pineapple Chunks
  • 3 tablespoons Coconut Aminos
  • 1 tablespoon Grated Fresh Ginger
  • 1 tablespoon Honey
  • 1 tablespoon Arrowroot Flour
  • 1 tablespoon Avocado Oil
  • 1 pound Boneless Pork Chop, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 small White Onion, diced
  • 3 cloves Garlic, minced
  • Salt and Pepper, to taste
  • Green Onions, sliced, for serving
  • Crushed Red Pepper Flakes, for serving
  • Cauliflower Rice, cooked, for serving

Directions

  1. Drain pineapple, reserving the juice. Set pineapple aside. In a small bowl, whisk together pineapple juice, coconut aminos, ginger, honey, and arrowroot powder. Set aside.
  2. Heat avocado oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Add pork and cook until browned on all sides, about 5 minutes. Remove to a plate and set aside.
  3. In the same pan, cook onion until it begins to soften, about 2 minutes Add garlic and cook until fragrant, just 30 seconds. Pour in the pineapple juice mixture and stir to scrape up any browned bits in the skillet. Add pork and pineapple chunks.
  4. Bring the mixture to a simmer and let cook until thickened, stirring frequently, about 5 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  5. Sprinkle with sliced green onions and crushed red pepper flakes. Serve over cauliflower rice, if desired.

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If you've got lots of pineapple chopped up from dinner, the obvious next step is a delicious dessert! Hummingbird Cupcakes are just perfect for your spare pineapple!

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Hummingbird Cupcakes Recipe

    12 Servings

Ingredients

For the Cupcakes:
  • 1 1/2 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup Unsalted Butter, room temperature
  • 3/4 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2 large Eggs, room temperature
  • 2 large Bananas, mashed
  • 1/3 cup Crushed Pineapple
  • 1/2 cup Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
  • 1/2 cup Chopped Pecans, toasted
For the Frosting:
  • 4 ounces Cream Cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup Unsalted Butter, room temperature
  • 3 1/2 cups Powdered Sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract
  • 1-2 tablespoons Heavy Cream
  • 12 Dried Pineapple Rings

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a cupcake tin with liners and set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, add the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon together. Whisk well and set aside.
  3. In a mixer, beat together the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, making sure each egg well incorporated before adding the next.
  4. Add in the banana and pineapple and beat well.
  5. Add in the flour and mix until just incorporated. Fold in the coconut and pecans until just incorporated.
  6. Fill the cupcake liners until they are 3/4 full.
  7. Bake for 18 – 20 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
  8. While the cupcakes are cooling, beat the cream cheese and butter together until smooth and creamy. Add the powdered sugar and beat until it is well incorporated – about 3 minutes. Add in the vanilla extract and mix well. Add in enough heavy cream until it reaches your desired consistency.
  9. Fit a piping bag with a piping tip and fill with the frosting.
  10. Frost the cupcakes.
  11. Take the pineapple rings and make a cut on a part of the ring so you can wrap the ring around like a flower. Top the cupcakes with the dried pineapples.
  12. Store in an airtight container for up to three days.

 

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Christine Albury

About Christine

I'm a mom of 5 and love making healthy baby food with wholesome, natural ingredients. In 2005 I started the Homemade Baby Food Recipes website, sharing recipes for everything from simple fruit purees to gourmet curries for the baby food connoisseur! You'll also find plenty of tried and tested tips to help encourage even the most reluctant diner to enjoy a wide range of nutritious new foods. If you enjoy cooking, then you will LOVE learning to become head chef for a very special little customer!