DECORATIVE PINEAPPLE BOWL HOW-TO
Mama always said “DON’T play with your food!” Well I definitely disagree, we should “PLAY” with our food, actually be PLAYFUL with it. Nature has her own way of making the natural food we eat attractive, just look at all the vibrant colors that are out there. In is in our genes to be attracted to these colors and shapes that are found in nature; its how our ancestors picked the most nutritious and ripe food. I like to take it one step further and create different ways to display my food especially if it comes in a great natural package. Pineapples are one of those items that we can make into different serving dishes. One of my favorite ways to turn the skin of a pineapple into a serving dish is a DECORATIVE PINEAPPLE BOWL. This little bowl only takes a few minutes to create but it can make a big difference in the presentation of the food being served in it. Now picture this… fresh pineapple salsa in a regular plain bowl or fresh pineapple salsa in a decorative pineapple bowl(stay tuned for the salsa recipe)?? I think you get the picture. The best thing about turning the bottom of a pineapple into a bowl is that you were going to discard that piece anyways; so why not create a cute bowl out of it to wow your guests. See playing with your food can be fun!
I will now go through the steps on creating your decorative pineapple bowl….
A CHEF’S TIP: When you are looking at pineapples at the store or farmers market, try to find one that is ripe. A ripe pineapple will be dark golden yellow, the leaves will be dark green and a little dry, the center leaves on top will pull out easily, and the skin will smell like sweet pineapple. IF you can not find one that is already ripe then find one that looks the ripest and place in a large paper bag with 2 apples, roll the bag down tight to seal it and allow to ripen in the bag. Check it every 24 hours for the ripe description above. Be sure not to over ripen it because the inside will get mushy. Don’t worry, the apples will be fine to eat…
- Wash the outside of the pineapple well, remove any dirt or debris. Gather a large cutting board and sharp knifes. I use a 9 inch Santoku, a 6 inch serrated, and a birds-beak knife. Lay the pineapple on its side on the cutting board.
- With your large knife, cut the top off about 2 inches from the top, save for decoration if using with in 2 days. Cover the fruit part with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
- Inspect the bottom 1/3 of the pineapple for a pattern, this is where you will start your decorative cuts. Use a birds-beak knife or small paring knife and slowly cut the top edge of the pattern (I used the natural curve of the skin nubs). Gently cut into the center of the pineapple while cutting your pattern. This may take a few passes, take your time.
- Now cut 2 inches above your pattern all the way through and set aside to use in your other recipes. Gently lift up the excess from your decorative cuts, reserve this for other recipes.
- Use your serrated knife or birds-beak to gently cut around the inside of the bowls edge to 1 inch of the skin. Be careful not to pierce through to the outside.
- Cut out the remaining fruit and core left in the bowl with one of the small knives. Trim up the sides and scrape any remaining fruit with a metal spoon. Rinse the bowl out with clean water and pat dry. Now the bowl is ready to be used. If you are making this before the day you are using it, place it in a sealed container and refrigerate up to 2 days.