2 Mar 2008

Delicious pineapples

Going home to the rather rural area south of Jakarta where I live, I saw heaps of pineapples at the roadside. They were beautifully pinecone shaped, some were soft yellow colored and some light green. The guy who was selling them gave me a very reasonable price, Rp 10,000 for three, as well as giving one to my driver.

He looked a bit passive when he received the money. "These are the first I sold today," he said, "I think nobody wants pineapples. The weather is a bit cold and pineapples are cooling, and there are so many of them."

The pineapples from the nearby Sundanese Highlands he was selling were extremely sweet, and when made to a kind of marmalade they make an excellent filling for pies. So why do people buy so few pineapples compared to bananas, watermelons or other fruits sold along the side of the road.

"They are a bit difficult to clean," a friend said and told me rather vaguely that for expecting women pineapple is taboo. Poor pineapple, because in many countries the fruit is actually very popular.

First, for the delicious and sweet-sourish taste and then, no less, as an additional health food. The pineapple has among others benefits a soothing effect on sore throats because it contains the anti-inflammatory enzyme bromelain (Rebecca Wood, New Whole Foods Encyclopedia). Actually, when the monsoons are on and chilly winds are blowing and most people suffer from sore throats, they should eat pineapple.

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