The latest food craze comes from Del Monte, and is the result of fifteen years of development and research: the pink pineapple, or more specifically the “pinkglow” pineapple. Officially launched only one month ago, they’re causing a buzz in culinary circles.
The flesh is somewhat more dense than the standard, already weighty, pineapple, but the key point of interest is the interior color. As suggested by its name, the pinkglow pineapple has elements of red within, due to large quantities of lycopene.
Lycopene is a natural antioxidant with properties which are believed to aid in heart health and reduce some cancer risks. It provides red pigmentation, and is the primary reason for the color of most tomatoes. It occurs naturally within pineapples, but is broken down in reactions with various enzymes released by the fruit. The resultant production of beta-carotene adds the golden hue traditionally associated with the fruit.
In theory, then, consumption of pink pineapples will provide some heart benefits while reducing the benefits to eye health which might otherwise develop. In reality, this is very unlikely to be a concern, because pinkglow pineapples are quite expensive; typically they are selling for anywhere between $25 to $45 each in comparison to the $3-5 for a standard pineapple.
The important question, then, is: how does it taste? And the answer is: like a pineapple. Mostly.
Pinkglow pineapples retain much of the acidic bite of a standard pineapple while simultaneously providing a heightened sweetness. While low-acid pineapples develop a syrupy aspect to their flavor, that is missing in the pink variety.
Whether this is worth a vastly increased cost is up to the individual. I have no regrets for trying this once… but we’re unlikely to make today’s sampling a regular event.
On the other hand, it’s far better than what “Pink Pineapple” meant throughout the 1990s and into the early 2000s, an animated pornography distributor from Japan. At least spending money on the latest pink pineapple incarnation is healthy and in good taste.
Question of the night: What’s your favorite way to eat pineapple?