Cut off the top and bottom.
We love the sweet-sour taste of pineapple just about any time, but it has particular appeal during the dog days of winter. You can buy pre-cut pineapple from the store, but it's fresher and more economical to buy a whole one and cut it yourself. Here's the way we do it.
Pick a pineapple that has evenly shaped "eyes" on the skin. Look for ones that are mostly yellow — we've found that the more yellow they are, the sweeter they are. Completely green pineapples are under-ripe. You can also tell if a pineapple is ripe if it has a sweet smell near the base and if the fronds on top are easy to pull out.
How to Slice a Pineapple
Makes about 5 cups chopped pineapple
What You Need
1 ripe pineapple
1. Cut off the top and bottom. Lay the pineapple on its side and slice off the top and bottom of the fruit. This gets rid of the big spiky fronds and creates a stable cutting base.
2. Trim off the rind. Set the pineapple upright. Work your way around the pineapple, cutting off the rind in strips. Cut deep enough to remove the "eyes," but save as much of the flesh as possible. After you're done, trim off any eyes or bits of rind you may have missed.
3. Slice the pineapple in half. With the pineapple still upright, slice it straight down the middle into halves.
4. Slice the pineapple into quarters. Lay each half cut-side down on your cutting board and slice them in half again to make four quarters.
5. Trim out the core. Lay one quarter on the cutting board like a wedge. Cut into the wedge at an angle to slice out the tough inner core. Repeat with the remaining quarters.
6. Slice into bite-sized pieces. Divide each quarter into two or three strips and then dice into bite-sized pieces. (Or if you prefer larger pieces, leave the quarter intact and slice the pineapple into pieces.)
7. Storing pineapple. Store sliced pineapple in an airtight container for up to one week in the refrigerator.
(Images: Emma Christensen)