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Old 03-11-2017, 11:54 AM   #1
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Softening Pineapple

Can anyone tell me the best way to soften pineapple please?

Most Friday or Saturday nights my daughter has gf sweet and sour chicken with chips from our local gf-friendly Chinese restaurant. The dish usually includes onions, carrots and pineapple, but she stopped asking for the onions and carrots, due to problems with swallowing hard food. Now she's also having problems with the pineapple. I don't want to be asking for no pineapple either, so was wondering if there was some way we could soften the pineapple. I have tried heating them in their sauce on the hob, but it makes little difference.

Any tips?

Thanks.

Gillian

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Old 03-11-2017, 11:57 AM   #2
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Can anyone tell me the best way to soften pineapple please?

Most Friday or Saturday nights my daughter has gf sweet and sour chicken with chips from our local gf-friendly Chinese restaurant. The dish usually includes onions, carrots and pineapple, but she stopped asking for the onions and carrots, due to problems with swallowing hard food. Now she's also having problems with the pineapple. I don't want to be asking for no pineapple either, so was wondering if there was some way we could soften the pineapple. I have tried heating them in their sauce on the hob, but it makes little difference.

Any tips?

Thanks.

Gillian
My first question would be why is she having trouble swallowing? That can be caused by a medical problem that can be treated. Rather than restricting her food intake, I would suggest trying to figure out what the problem is.

Pineapple has a high fiber content, so the only way to soften it would be cooking it for a very long time, unless you want to buzz it in the food processor to make the pieces smaller.
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Old 03-25-2017, 04:30 PM   #3
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It is caused by a medical problem, which is taking a while to get treated - long story. I'm just trying to make things easier for her in the meantime.

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Old 03-25-2017, 04:46 PM   #4
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Cooked veggies/pineapple will soften with cooking.
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Old 03-25-2017, 05:01 PM   #5
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Maybe you could ask the restaurant to prepare her vegetables extra well-cooked; the vegetables are usually cooked separately from the chicken. Or maybe you could buzz the vegetables briefly in a blender or food processor to break them down a little.
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Old 03-25-2017, 05:11 PM   #6
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I was thinking the same thing, GG. Maybe kind of a pineapple smoothie. Or pineapple jam. It's already cut into small pieces and softened by the canning process.
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Old 03-25-2017, 05:52 PM   #7
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I was thinking the same thing, GG. Maybe kind of a pineapple smoothie. Or pineapple jam. It's already cut into small pieces and softened by the canning process.
Yes, and that way, she could continue to get the onions and maybe the carrots, to get a little more nutrition.
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Old 03-25-2017, 10:12 PM   #8
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Would a smaller dice be easier for her to swallow?

If it is a small mom and pop restaurant, maybe you can talk to the chef/cook and explain your situation, and they can dice the pineapple smaller for your daughter. Onions and carrots, too.

I sure hope her medical treatment is successful, so she can eat what she wants, again, as soon as possible.

CD
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Old 03-26-2017, 12:07 AM   #9
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softening pineapple

I have recently canned some pineapple. One of the steps during this is to Blanch the pineapple. Blanching pineapple will soften the fibers in it. For my purposes, blanching it for 5 minutes softens them up. This simply means putting pineapple in a pot and cover it with water. Heat it up to boiling and let it boil for 5 minutes and remove it from heat and then cool the pineapple in cold water. I do that by dipping it out into another pot and running cold water over it and draining the cold water off it.
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Old 04-28-2017, 09:51 AM   #10
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Thanks for all the suggestions. I have tried cooking the pineapple a little bit longer but it doesn't make a lot of difference. Taking time to bizz it with a blender to me takes away from the convenience idea. I'm not sure if my daughter could manage the veg and pineapple in smaller chunks or not. I could certainly ask her. I just ask for less pineapple than they would normally put in.

The restaurant is reasonably small and they know me there, but I imagine cooking the veg and pineapple for extra time for my daughter would mean us having to wait a little bit longer for it. I could certainly talk to them about it as they are very pleasant. As soon as I walk in they ask, 'Usual?' or even just 'Anything else?' lol.

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Old 04-30-2017, 09:30 AM   #11
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I don't know about softening it but I have learned a trick to make it juicy.
Sometimes you get one and parts are dryer then others. I learn that with the pineapple sitting upright the natural juices drop to the bottom, so before you cut it open. cut the stalk off or the pineapple stem whatever its called, just down to the top not into the fruit. then turn it upside down and leave for an hour before cutting it. all the juice flows evenly.
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Old 04-30-2017, 10:44 AM   #12
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I'm afraid I can't help with the ready made dish from the restaurant. If it were me, I'd learn to make the meal at home, and pick over-ripe pineapple from the store. Core it, and cut the outer layer off and you will find super sweet, and soft pineapple inside, ready to be dice into whatever size you like. The chicken part is easy. Simply dice boneless chicken breasts into chunks about the same size as real playing dice,, and stir fry them in a very hot pan, with a little salt, until just barely browned. They will be very tender and juicy. Stir-fry the veggies in the same pan, again with a little oil added. Season while cooking with garlic, and a little hoison sauce. To help make the veggies soft enough for her to eat, add a quarter cup of water and cover. Cook another 5 to 8 minutes, and test the veggies to see if they are soft enough. REmove the veggies with a slotted spoon and add a little corn starch slurry into the pan to make a sauce. Combine the meat and veggies and add the sauce to the bowl. Serve with cooked rice, or lo-mein noodles.

This should take no more than an hour to prepare.

Get the rice cooking first. It takes about 50 minutess to cook. Use 1 cup of long grain rice with 3/4 cup of water, and 1/2 tsp. of salt in a suitable sauce pan. Bring to a boil, then turn back the heat to it's lowest setting. Cover and let cook for 40 minutes. It will be perfect. While the rice is cooking, prep the meat and veggies and get the pan/wok very hot. Add a little oil to the pan and cook the food. The rice and other food should get done at about the same time.

If you are making noodles instead of rice, the noodles take between ten and fifteen minutes, depending on how soft you want them.

As you get used to making this simple stir-fry, you can begin adding other ingredients that are easily eaten, like snap peas, frozen baby peas, sliced celery, or even more soft, diced celery root, and more seasonings, such as 5-spice poweder. ginger, oyster sauce, etc.

Hope this helps.

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Old 05-17-2017, 04:51 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by letscook View Post
I don't know about softening it but I have learned a trick to make it juicy.
Sometimes you get one and parts are dryer then others. I learn that with the pineapple sitting upright the natural juices drop to the bottom, so before you cut it open. cut the stalk off or the pineapple stem whatever its called, just down to the top not into the fruit. then turn it upside down and leave for an hour before cutting it. all the juice flows evenly.
Sounds like a good tip for someone who is starting from scratch with the pineapple and not dealing with it at a later stage in the cooking process.

Thanks,

Gillian
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Old 05-17-2017, 05:05 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Chief Longwind Of The North View Post
I'm afraid I can't help with the ready made dish from the restaurant. If it were me, I'd learn to make the meal at home, and pick over-ripe pineapple from the store. Core it, and cut the outer layer off and you will find super sweet, and soft pineapple inside, ready to be dice into whatever size you like. The chicken part is easy. Simply dice boneless chicken breasts into chunks about the same size as real playing dice,, and stir fry them in a very hot pan, with a little salt, until just barely browned. They will be very tender and juicy. Stir-fry the veggies in the same pan, again with a little oil added. Season while cooking with garlic, and a little hoison sauce. To help make the veggies soft enough for her to eat, add a quarter cup of water and cover. Cook another 5 to 8 minutes, and test the veggies to see if they are soft enough. REmove the veggies with a slotted spoon and add a little corn starch slurry into the pan to make a sauce. Combine the meat and veggies and add the sauce to the bowl. Serve with cooked rice, or lo-mein noodles.

This should take no more than an hour to prepare.

Get the rice cooking first. It takes about 50 minutess to cook. Use 1 cup of long grain rice with 3/4 cup of water, and 1/2 tsp. of salt in a suitable sauce pan. Bring to a boil, then turn back the heat to it's lowest setting. Cover and let cook for 40 minutes. It will be perfect. While the rice is cooking, prep the meat and veggies and get the pan/wok very hot. Add a little oil to the pan and cook the food. The rice and other food should get done at about the same time.

If you are making noodles instead of rice, the noodles take between ten and fifteen minutes, depending on how soft you want them.

As you get used to making this simple stir-fry, you can begin adding other ingredients that are easily eaten, like snap peas, frozen baby peas, sliced celery, or even more soft, diced celery root, and more seasonings, such as 5-spice poweder. ginger, oyster sauce, etc.

Hope this helps.

Seeeeeeya; Chief Longwind of the North
Thanks for the recipe. I might try it sometime, but with chips rather than rice, as that is my daughter's preference. Last time I bought tinned carrots - was thinking of buying tinned pineapple, possibly the crushed variety. The other alternative might be to cut up the veg and the pineapple into smaller pieces.

Talking of rice, when I cook it, it only takes about 15-20 minutes.

Gillian
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Old 05-17-2017, 06:54 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GilliAnne View Post
Thanks for the recipe. I might try it sometime, but with chips rather than rice, as that is my daughter's preference. Last time I bought tinned carrots - was thinking of buying tinned pineapple, possibly the crushed variety. The other alternative might be to cut up the veg and the pineapple into smaller pieces.

Talking of rice, when I cook it, it only takes about 15-20 minutes.

Gillian
What was I thinking? You are right about the rice. And my measurements were all wrong. It should have read 1-3/4 cups of water to 1 cup of rice, bring to a boil, then cover and simmer for twenty minutes. Ssorry about that.

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