Photo: Benjamin Thompson (Flickr)
If you want to make a jelled salad with pineapple, you’d better not use fresh pineapple, or you’ll end up with a soupy mess. On the other hand, only fresh pineapple will work as a meat tenderizer.
History Of Pineapple
Five hundred years ago, Christopher Columbus found Indians in the Caribbean using pineapple juice to soften their skin, clean their wounds, remove body-hair, and to cure upset stomach.
The secret of the pineapple is an enzyme called “bromelain,” which is similar to the enzymes that our own digestive system uses to break down protein.
When you marinate meat in fresh pineapple juice, the bromelain begins breaking down the proteins so that by the time the meat gets to your mouth, the digestion is already begun.
Pineapple juice works as a skin conditioner because the bromelain breaks down dead and damaged outer layers of skin, exposing the softer skin underneath. Putting pineapple juice on an open wound might be painful but it can also break down damaged tissue and kill bacteria.
Jelly Molds And Pineapple
But one place fresh pineapple does not work is in jelled salads because gelatin is a form of protein, and sois broken down by bromelain, leaving you a very sloppy salad.
But don’t despair; since bromelain is broken down by heat, you can still make a jello mold with cooked or canned pineapple — only you won’t be able to use the cooked pineapple to tenderize