Sunday, July 15, 2007

Caramelized Pineapple (Attempt #1)

Tonight on a whim we decided to try to caramelize some fresh pineapple chunks chopped from a Maui Gold Pineapple that was getting to the point of "eat or toss". Without any instruction or knowhow, other than having watched the episode of Jacques Pepin's cooking show on the topic, we made our first attempt at what should be a relatively simple recipe. We checked a few interenet recipes, all of which called for a few ingredients we didn't have, such as corn syrup or rum, but hey, caramel is just cooked sugar and water, right?

After the sugar carmelized, we poured in about 1/2 cup of pineapple juice (canned), watched as the brown sugar turned into a sticky, viscous clump. Caramel, right? Not really. We added the pineapple chunks, and waited. And stirred. And waited. Nothing really happened. Maybe too much liquid, not enough sugar, I don't really know. The pineapple sat, being sauteed in sugar water until it grew soft and we figured we should take the whole operation off of the heat before we ended up with warm pineapple mush. Strangely enough, after the initial caramelization of the sugar, nothing much turned into caramel, on or around the pineapple.

So we live again to try another time. Maybe next time with just sugar and water. Maybe I should learn how to make simple syrup. Maybe I should try my hand at caramel? Oh well. At least the ice cream was good.


Holler said...

You must go back and try the carmelized pineapple again! I was very tempted by your post heading!

SteamyKitchen said...

Oh I would have loved a photo of the "after"! I'm sure it was still good over the ice cream.

Next time, omit the juice (it won't carmelize b/c too much liquid) and instead just sprinkle both sides of the pineapple with brown sugar. (at this point, I'd throw it on the bbq grill) - but if you don't have a bbq grill in your 6x10 s.f. kitchen, then just grill in a nonstick skillet. Once the sugar starts carmelizing, flip. Remove.

Same skillet, now add pineapple juice, pinch of salt, little more brown sugar. Reduce for a couple of minutes.

Get some rum!! Turn off heat. Add a splash of rum. Turn on heat and gently tip the pan towards the flame.

Pour this concoction over your grilled pineapple.

I want this for breakfast now!