I have recently returned from Aloha land having been blessed to go to my niece’s wedding on the island of Oahu in Hawaii. On her wedding day, naturally the bride was stunning and the groom handsome in his Marine’s uniform. The wedding was up at the western tip of the island in Hale’iwa - a beautiful area and perfect weather for the outdoor event! From the house some of my family and I were renting in Kailua, I was able to easily get to a beach every morning on a bicycle I had rented. The perfect start to any day. I did a little hiking, a little touring and had lots of fun with my family. Hope to get back there someday, but there are many other places to go on my bucket list!
Being in the perfect place for eating pineapple, I was in my glory as it is one of my favorite fruits. We took a fascinating tour of the Dole Pineapple Plantation and of course, after tasting real Hawaiian pineapple, it was indeed the best I’ve ever had! Peak season for pineapples is between March and July, however, most of the pineapples we see at the market are not coming from Hawaii, but from out of the country. (Isn’t everything coming from abroad these days?) I find that if I buy a pineapple that isn’t quite ripe, I just leave it on my kitchen counter for a few days and by the time I get to cutting it up, it’s perfect. So without further ado, following are my favorite ways to eat it – other than by itself, eaten fresh or grilled or with cottage cheese for breakfast.
Easy Summer Chicken and Pineapple Salad
1/2 cup of heavy or whipping cream, whipped
1 cup of mayonnaise
2-1/2 lbs. of poached, boneless chicken cut into bite-sized chunks
2 cups of diced celery
2 cups of diced fresh pineapple
Salt and pepper to taste
Whisk the whipping cream and mayonnaise together until blended. Combine the chicken, celery and pineapple in a mixing bowl and pour the dressing over it. Toss to coat thoroughly and season to taste with the salt and pepper. Serve on plates over the mixed greens of your choice. Serves 6
Mom’s Easy Pineapple Raisin Sauce
1/2 cup of packed brown sugar
2 Tb. of cornstarch
1 tsp. of ground mustard
1-1/2 cups of water
1/2 cup of raisins
2 Tb. of white vinegar
2 Tb. of lemon juice
2 Tb. of butter
Combine the brown sugar, cornstarch and mustard in a saucepan. Stir in the water, raisins, vinegar and lemon juice until blended. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring for 2 minutes or until thickened. Stir in the butter until melted. Serve warm over sliced ham. Yields about 2 cups.
4 cups of shredded cabbage
3/4 cups of fresh pineapple diced into small bits
3/4 cup of mayonnaise
2 Tb. of sugar
2 Tb. of cider vinegar
1-2 Tb. of milk (low-fat or 2%)
Put the cabbage and pineapple into a large bowl. Mix the mayonnaise, sugar, cider vinegar and milk together to create the dressing and pour over the salad, tossing to coat thoroughly. Refrigerate until serving. Serves 8
PS - For anyone who loves healthy shakes, I threw this together to keep me going while playing tennis the other day: Combine 3 large spoonfuls of fresh pineapple (I had cut it into decent sized chunks), 1 scoop of unflavored protein powder, a dash of vanilla and plain almond milk in whatever you use as a blender. Blend and you’re done. (Or you could omit the dash of vanilla and use Vanilla Almond milk) It was delicious!