Accra Ghana Temple

Accra Ghana Temple
Accra Ghana Temple

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Well Kept Secrets of Preparing Tropical Fruit

By popular demand, I am going to share with you some inside secrets of cutting tropical fruit and how to tell when they are ripe. 

Mangos stay green and feel firm as they ripen.  I judge when they are ripe by the smell.  When they smell fruity and wonderful, they are ripe.  If you don't plan to eat it today, place it in the refrigerator where it will stay very well 2-4 weeks.  This is a BIG one from our mango tree in the backyard.  How fun is that?

The easiest way to cut a mango is to forget about peeling it.  Stand the mango on end and begin at the top to slice along the oblong seed (so you are basically cutting it in half).  Then take that half and score the inside (all the way to the peel) into squares the size you like.  Then use a spoon and scoop out the squares.  If for any reason the mango gives you grief, you can flip it (like this photo) inside out and use a knife to cut off the squares. 

Papayas turn from green to slightly yellow and begin to soften when ripe.  Get ready to cut it or place it in the refrigerator where it will stay ready for 2-4 weeks.     

The easiest way to cut a papaya is to cut it in half the long way.  Use a small spoon to scoop out the seeds.  Scoop until there is a smooth surface.  Then score the inside into squares (all the way to the peel).  Use a spoon to scoop out the squares.  Basically it is the same as a mango, except the seeds come out differently.

Now for pineapples.  First test the ripeness by trying to pull out one of the top inner leaves.  If it is ripe, the leaf should pull right out.  And certainly the pineapple begins to turn yellow as it ripens.  You can also smell the bottom of the pineapple checking for a sweet, almost flowery aroma.  Once ripe they keep well in the refrigerator uncut.  Some recommend turning the pineapple upside down for at least 30 minutes before cutting.  This is supposed to redistribute the sugar inside. 

There are two schools of thought on cutting pineapples.  I will tell you the easiest way for me.  I like the sweet white Cape Coast Pineapples, with the soft edible core.  First, cut off the top and the bottom, leaving a cylinder shaped pineapple.  Now cut the pineapple in half longways.  Cut each half again longways.  Cut each fourth again longways, leaving 8 long wedges.  Use a carving knife and slice between the peel and the fruit.  You can cut off the core from each wedge if desired.  At this point it is very easy to cut the fruit into wedges, tidbits, or leave them as spears.

The cut fruit will easily stay fresh in the refrigerator for a week, so enjoy!      


1 comment:

  1. Beautiful and mouth watering!

    By the way... I believe you are now completely spoiled by the amazing fruit hanging off your own trees and such. You'll never ever be satisfied with Dick's Market produce again.