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Hot and bothered? Chill out with these pineapple concoctions


New Delhi, June 21: Pineapples have a typical musky tropical flavour. I’ve always loved pineapples for their versatility: use them in salads, punches, cocktails, main dishes and even desserts. It doesn’t end here. We can even use the shell for decoration or for serving salads or desserts.

And to top it all, pineapples pack a tremendous nutritional punch, containing vitamins A,C, E, and K; potassium; calcium; electrolytes and phyto-nutrients like carotene.

Pineapples are a rich source of anti-oxidants. They fight against free radicals in the body, preventing cell damage. These anti-oxidants help protect you from diseases like atherosclerosis, heart diseases, arthritis and various cancers. Besides, the fruit prevents colds, improves the eyesight, promotes healthy gums, builds strong bones, prevents muscular degeneration, aids digestion and boosts the immune system.

With its cap of spiky, green leaves and golden orange skin, pineapples have a unique appearance. Interestingly, a single pineapple is, in fact, a collection of multiple fruits; each one is the fruit of an individual blossom. Pineapples are available the year-round in local markets.

I being a foodie, liberally use pineapples in my preparations. I am going to share some exotic pineapple recipes in this Foodie Trail so we all can treat our taste buds, besides reaping the benefits of this healthy tropical wonder.

To kick-start here is the recipe for a simple mocktail cooler:

* Pine cooler
Juice of a ripe pineapple
Lemon 1 tbsp
Ginger juice 1 tbsp
Salt to taste
Mint leaves for garnish

Mix all the ingredients together and serve chilled, garnished with mint leaves

Alternatively you can mix 1/4 of the glass with soda and 3/4th with the juice mixture for some fizz

* Pineapple and feta salad
Pineapple cubes 1 cup
Feta cheese 3 tbsp
Peanuts 2 tbsp
Salt to taste
Red chilli flakes 1/2 tsp
Lemon 1 tbsp
Sugar 1 tbsp
Mustard powder 1 tsp

Mix all the ingredients together and rub well so the feta is evenly spread on the pineapple cubes

Serve chilled

Now, get ready for an Indian twist:

* Pineapple halwa
Grated pineapple 1 helping
Khoya 1 cup
Raisins 2 tsp
Sugar 1/2 cup
Cardamom powder 1 tsp
Oil 1/2 cup

In a pan, heat the oil and stir-fry pineapple for 5-10 minutes. Add khoya and continuously stir-fry till all is blended well. Now add the other ingredients, stirring for few minutes

Serve hot.

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