PINEAPPLE \u2013 Native to South America, it was named for its resemblance to a pine cone. An exotic, rare, and tasty delicacy in the 18th century, this golden gem is more than just a delicious tropical fruit \u2013 it offers significant health benefits as well. And I just found out that it was termed as the healthiest fruit in the world and for some seriously important reasons. Perfect for my little family! So, are you ready to discover the healthy side of all things pineapple? Health Benefits of Pineapples for Your Family Boost Your Immune System Pineapples are a powerful source of vitamin C. A 100g of pineapple contributes 79% of your vitamin C intake for the day. Other notable vitamins and minerals include potassium, vitamin B6, and thiamin. Kids who eat pineapples have a significantly lower risk of both viral and bacterial infections. A Great Remedy for Sinuses and Allergy Swellings Pineapple is super high in bromelain \u2013 an enzyme that helps reduce mucus in the throat and nose. Kids with a sinus infection recovered significantly faster while taking a bromelain supplement. If you are exposed to seasonal allergies, do add pineapples to your diet to soothe your condition. Fun fact: Did you know? Pineapple is the ONLY\u00a0natural\u00a0food\u00a0source of bromelain, which is found in the stem\/core and the juice. Even more reasons to love pineapples! Stronger Bones Pineapple is a rich source of manganese \u2013 a mineral that is important for developing strong bones and connective tissue; helpful in building stronger bones in children and preventing osteoporosis in post-menopausal women. Healthier Eyes The rich source of vitamin C, anti-oxidants, and minerals like manganese and potassium in pineapples help fight against cell damages and reduces the risks of macular degeneration \u2013 an eye disease that affects older people. It is also a good source of beta carotene \u2013 essential for eye health. Accelerates Wound-Healing and Fights Against Diseases Known as nature\u2019s healing fruit, the rich vitamin C content of a pineapple may support collagen production \u2013 thus, promoting rapid wound healing. The pineapple\u2019s rich vitamins, enzymes, and antioxidants also help to boost the immune system and fight against diseases with their disease-fighting antioxidants. Better Digestion There is a reason why we should add pineapples into our diet and meals, and it is not just because of their sweet taste. Pineapple contains a special digestive enzyme called bromelain, which helps break down proteins and aid in digestion. Increased Energy Eating pineapples throughout the day is good to help boost your energy when you are feeling tired and sluggish. Pineapples contain high amounts of thiamine \u2013 a vitamin B6 which helps stabilise the body\u2019s blood sugar, along with manganese and thiamin, which also aid in energy production. The Many Tasty Ways to Enjoy Pineapples Photo Credit: Freepik Despite their sweetness, you will be surprised to know that pineapples are actually low in calories with 1 cup of pineapple chunks containing only 74 calories. They are also fat-free, cholesterol-free, and low in sodium. Hence, you should definitely incorporate pineapples into your family's meals. I know I am! This delicious tropical fruit is exceptionally juicy and has a vibrant tropical flavour that balances the tastes of sweet and tart. It blends beautifully with a variety of dishes, from sweet to savoury and even beverages. Pineapple is also often used to marinate meats as it is an effective meat tenderiser. Simply combine some fresh pineapple juice and soya sauce to make a simple meat marinade. Basically, in a nutshell: Pineapple is one of the most versatile fruits out there, and I have to agree on this! The Easiest Way To Cut A Pineapple Preparing fresh pineapples for your family's meals is easy if you know how to cut them. Let me show you how! Follow these steps: 1. First, twist the crown off and remove the bottom part of the pineapple. 2. Proceed to cut in 1\/2, then 1\/4 lengthwise. 3. Then, trim off the skin and ends. 4. Lastly, remove the core and cut the pineapple into bite-sized pieces. Done! Yes, it is that simple! I bet you did not imagine it to be this easy to cut a pineapple, right? Recipe: Let's Make Pajeri Nenas Recipe: Pajeri Nenas Now that we have learned how to cut a pineapple. Next, I am going to share with you two simple yet delicious recipes suitable for the entire family. The first recipe is a savoury pineapple curry dish called Pajeri Nenas. There are many ways to prepare this dish but the signature traditional taste of Pajeri Nenas has got to be sweet and rich with coconut milk. And it goes really well with steamed white rice. Ingredients: 1 whole pineapple Shallots, garlic, and ginger (julienne) 3 spices (cinnamon, clove, and star anise) 2 tablespoon dried shrimps (pounded to bring out the flavour) 200ml coconut milk 1 cup water 1 tablespoon kerisik (toasted grated coconut) 1 packet fish curry powder (add water to form a paste) Salt and sugar to taste Steps: 1. Pound dried shrimps to bring out the flavour. 2. Saut\u00e9 ginger, garlic, shallots, and the 3 spices until fragrant. Add dried shrimps and continue frying. 3. Add curry paste and fry until oil separates (oil floats to the top of the paste because moisture has evaporated). 4. Add salt and sugar to taste. I used palm sugar for a more aromatic and richer flavour. 5. Add 1 cup of water, kerisik, and bring to a boil. 6. Add coconut milk. 7. Last but not least, add in the main ingredient \u2013 golden pineapple slices. Cook until pineapples have softened a little and serve. Be prepared to cook an extra pot of rice because this irresistible dish will definitely make your kids go for second servings. Recipe: Time to Whip Up Some Pineapple Pies Recipe: Pineapple Pies The second recipe that I am going to share is a delectable dessert that is sure to captivate any taste bud in your household. My eldest son is not a fan of raw pineapples but when I served him this dessert, he ate at least 6 of them in one go! Cooked to golden perfection so every bite is a bite full of succulent, juicy pineapple taste. This gorgeous and delicious dessert is truly the epitome of a fruity summer dessert. And it is really simple to make! Ingredients: 300g ripe pineapples (cut in cubes) 1 cup cubed pineapples for juicing 5 tablespoon corn starch 3 tablespoon sugar Sandwich loaf 2 eggs (for dipping) Bread crumbs (for coating) Plain flour (mixed with water to form a paste for sealing) Steps: 1. Blend 1 cup of cubed pineapples, strain the juice, and keep the pulp. 2. Pour corn starch and sugar into a pan, and mix well. 3. Add pineapple juice and boil on low heat until thickens. 4. Add 300g of pineapple cubes. 5. Mix well and set aside. 6. Cut edges of the bread. 7. Use a rolling pin to flatten the bread. 8. Apply some flour paste on all 4 sides of the bread. 9. Place pineapple filling. 10. You may also add a slice of cheese before placing the pineapple filling on the bread. Roll and press to seal. 11. Dip bread in beaten eggs, coat with breadcrumbs and fry until golden brown. 12. Drain excess oil and serve. This recipe makes about 20 pieces of Pineapple Pies but I assure you that they will all be gone within seconds! The sweet and tangy pineapple fillings in a crispy crust like this is simply irresistible to the kids. It makes a sweet ending to a great family meal. This delectable dish is also a great option for breakfast or tea break with the family. Now that you know all the amazing health benefits of pineapples and how easy it is to prepare your family's meals with this ingredient, are you ready to get one for yourself and try the recipes I have shared above? The Secret is To Choose the Right Pineapple My choice of pineapples has always been DOLE\u00ae Tropical Gold\u00ae Pineapple as it is extremely juicy and sweet. I get it from the nearest supermarket whenever I do my weekly grocery shopping. The grocer does provide cutting services but I prefer to buy the whole fruit and cut them at home myself as and when I need it. And I have to admit that DOLE\u00ae Tropical Gold\u00ae Pineapple is by far the easiest pineapple I have ever had the pleasure of cutting. And did you know that DOLE\u00ae Tropical Gold\u00ae Pineapple is strongly recommended for the ladies for its nutritional value and low-acid properties? Well, you do now! In fact, this tropical fruit provides essential nutrients, such as copper and several B vitamins, that are important during pregnancy. Furthermore, as its acid content is lesser compared to other pineapples, it is safe to say that you can eat it fresh without having to experience that familiar, strange taste. So, ladies, do not stop eating your pineapples as they can be of benefit to women. But what about the kids, you may ask? If you want to introduce pineapples to your kids, it is highly recommended to try DOLE\u00ae Tropical Gold\u00ae Pineapple because, unlike other pineapples that are usually sour until they make your mouth pucker, DOLE\u00ae Tropical Gold\u00ae Pineapple is sweet and irresistibly juicy. Hence, the chances are higher that your kids will take a liking to them. Visit DOLE\u00ae\u00a0Malaysia's\u00a0Facebook & Instagram pages today for more fruitilicious updates and to learn more on nature\u2019s golden healing fruit!