Pineapple Starter Recipes for Pineapple Fans

Pineapples are an excellent fruit to include in the family’s diet, and you will all benefit from having this delicious food daily. This tropical fruit has a sweet taste with a slightly acidic flavour, making it ideal for both desserts and savory dishes. Many Asian influenced dishes will include pineapple, and they are excellent as a starter.

Knowing when to pick and serve

Pineapples do not continue to ripen once picked, which means that they need to be cultivated at peak ripeness. Therefore, for people outside of the growing countries, pineapples can be expensive to purchase as they must be carefully handled. Top quality pineapples will have a rich colour with no greening. They will be soft to touch, but not too soft as this indicates that they are too ripe and cannot be used.

Rich in vitamins and nutrients

Pineapples are rich in vitamin C and have a dietary enzyme which is excellent to tenderize meat. This makes the fruit ideal to eat with different meats, either grilled or baked. However, you may find that this enzyme causes a tingling sensation in your mouth which can be painful.

Pineapples are also placed in the negative calorie section, which is perfect for people on low calorie diets. The high fibre within the pineapples is fantastic and can help your digestive system. There are also levels of vitamin A, iron and calcium present, which are perfect to include in your diet.

Low fat sweet-and-sour chicken cups

You will need:

· 1 Gem lettuce, with leaves separated

· 2 chicken breasts cut into strips

· 1 sliced green pepper

· 2 cloves garlic sliced

· 1 tbsp toasted cashews

· 1 tbsp sesame seeds

· 1 inch piece fresh root ginger

· 100g fresh pineapple in chunks

For the sauce:

· 1 tbsp soft light brown sugar

· 2 fl oz dry sherry

· 2 fl oz ketchup

· 2 fl oz rice vinegar

· 2 fl oz soy sauce

· 5 fl oz chicken stock

· 1 chopped red chili pepper

· 1 tbsp cornflour

· 2 fl oz vegetable oil

Directions to make:

· Mix everything for the sauce, except for the corn flour together in a bowl

· Heat the oil in a wok and stir fry the chicken for 4 minutes

· Add the other ingredients and fry for 1-2 minutes

· Add the sauce to the chicken and cook for 5 minutes

· Stir in the corn flour and wait until the sauce has thickened

· Arrange the lettuce leaves on a plate and spoon the mixture onto the leaves

· Sprinkle with sesame seeds and serve