It’s hot out and salads are on the menu in most households. This one is easy, fast and very moreish.
Pineapples are available where I live all year round. They don’t grow here but I can usually get my hands on a nice, sweet ripe one so this can be made any time of the year. Make sure your pineapple smells like a pineapple. It won’t ripen once it’s been harvested. It should smell sweet and not like it’s halfway to becoming wine. The leaves should be nice and green. There shouldn’t be any mold or mushy parts. It should have pretty, round eyes. You should be able to feel some give when you press on it. Heavier is usually juicier. You can leave a cut pineapple out for a few days or a couple of weeks in the refrigerator. You can freeze any extra you have. It might lose a bit of flavour but won’t lose as much if you freeze a large section that hasn’t been cut. And of course they go in your smoothies.
If you like them (I can’t stand myself after eating them) use red onions. My all time favourite onion raw or cooked (mmm, caramelized onions….) is the Sweet Vidalia. Sometimes they are just labelled Sweet. I can remember my parents eating onion sandwiches when I was a kid. I couldn’t fathom how they could eat something so disgusting, but I can now. I think my taste buds have matured or maybe they just aren’t as sharp as they were. I’m still working up to eating an onion sandwich. Soon. For real.
Dill is my favourite herb to throw in when the salad is just for me. I have one cakelet that hates dill (I think it is the youngest male cakelet) so basil or oregano would be the usual choice. I’m also sitting here thinking that fennel or caraway would work. So many choices….
This can be done on the barbeque, indoor grill or even a frying pan in a pinch. I’ve also successfully done pineapple and onion in a toaster oven on a small pizza stone. I’m not allowed to play with fire so an outdoor barbeque is off limits for me. Boo. Hiss.
If I’m eating this as a meal, Renee’s Sweet Onion Dressing is yummy in place of the lemon juice and rind and I’m thinking that Renee’s Tangerine and Lime Dressing would be more than acceptable. I haven’t seen this one yet but as soon as I do, it’s coming home with me. These dressings are in the refrigerated case at the grocery store.
One of these days I’ll take some photos and add them. If you make this and think of taking one, please send it to me. I’d love to know how you made yours.
- 1 whole pineapple
- 2 sweet vidalia onions
- Spray olive oil or a small amount of regular olive oil
- 6 or 8 cocktail tomatoes
- 1 lemon
- Half a cup of basil leaves (or your favourite summer herb)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat your grill.
- Prepare your pineapple by slicing off the fronds on the top and cut a slice off the bottom. You will have two flat ends. Stand it upright. Use a sharp knife and slice off the eyes by cutting from the top to the bottom in a slow motion following the lines of the pineapple. Scoop out any little pieces of eyes that remain. Now cut thick ½ inch rings trying to keep them even.
- Peel the onions and slice them into ½ inch rings. Keep the slices together even though separating the rings is fun and hard to resist.
- Spray the pineapple and onion rings with olive oil spray or brush them lightly with bottled oil.
- Grill your pineapple for about 5 minutes per side. They will have pretty grill marks and soften slightly. Do the same with onion. Depending on your grill it might take a different amount of time to do this. Let your eyes and nose guide you.
- Cut each slice into quarters and toss with quartered tomatoes, lemon juice, some of the lemon rind (don't grate into the white pith as it's bitter). Add in your basil leaves or other herbs. Season with salt and pepper.
- Served as a side you will get 4 servings. Served over lettuce leaves, grated carrot and celery you will get 2 mains.