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Pineapple (Khóm/Thơm/Dứa)

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Pineapple is eaten fresh or canned as slices, slices, juices or mixed juices. There are two types of pineapple, pineapple with thorns and without thorns: pineapple with thorns, called ” Khóm” in the West of Vietnam, and without thorns called “Thơm”.

Pineapples grow as a small shrub; the individual flowers of the unpollinated plant fuse to form a multiple fruit. The plant is normally propagated from the offset produced at the top of the fruit, or from a side shoot, and typically matures within a year.

The pineapple is a herbaceous perennial, which grows to 1.0 to 1.5 m (3 ft 3 in to 4 ft 11 in) tall, although sometimes it can be taller. The plant has a short, stocky stem with tough, waxy leaves. When creating its fruit, it usually produces up to 200 flowers, although some large-fruited cultivars can exceed this. Once it flowers, the individual fruits of the flowers join together to create a multiple fruit. After the first fruit is produced, side shoots (called ‘suckers’ by commercial growers) are produced in the leaf axils of the main stem. These suckers may be removed for propagation, or left to produce additional fruits on the original plant. Commercially, suckers that appear around the base are cultivated. It has 30 or more narrow, fleshy, trough-shaped leaves that are 30 to 100 cm (1 to 3+1⁄2 ft) long, surrounding a thick stem; the leaves have sharp spines along the margins. In the first year of growth, the axis lengthens and thickens, bearing numerous leaves in close spirals. After 12 to 20 months, the stem grows into a spike-like inflorescence up to 15 cm (6 in) long with over 100 spirally arranged, trimerous flowers, each subtended by a bract.

The ovaries develop into berries, which coalesce into a large, compact, multiple fruit. The fruit of a pineapple is usually arranged in two interlocking helices, often with 8 in one direction and 13 in the other, each being a Fibonacci number.

The flesh and juice of the pineapple are used in cuisines around the world. In many tropical countries, pineapple is prepared and sold on roadsides as a snack. It is sold whole or in halves with a stick inserted. Whole, cored slices with a cherry in the middle are a common garnish on hams in the West. Chunks of pineapple are used in desserts such as fruit salad, as well as in some savory dishes, including pizza toppings, or as a grilled ring on a hamburger. Traditional dishes that use pineapple include hamonado, afritada, kaeng som pla, and Hawaiian haystack. Crushed pineapple is used in yogurt, jam, sweets, and ice cream. The juice of the pineapple is served as a beverage, and it is also the main ingredient in cocktails such as the piña colada and in the drink tepache.

Raw pineapple pulp is 86% water, 13% carbohydrates, 0.5% protein, and contains negligible fat (table). In a 100-gram reference amount, raw pineapple supplies 209 kilojoules (50 kilocalories) of food energy, and is a rich source of manganese (44% Daily Value, DV) and vitamin C (58% DV), but otherwise contains no micronutrients in significant amounts.

In commercial farming, flowering can be induced artificially, and the early harvesting of the main fruit can encourage the development of a second crop of smaller fruits. Once removed during cleaning, the top of the pineapple can be planted in soil and a new plant will grow. Slips and suckers are planted commercially.