Grilled Pineapple with Rum, Lime-Ginger Syrup, and Ice Cream
Pineapple’s firm texture and high sugar content make it an ideal candidate for the grill. Be sure to buy a pineapple that is already ripe—the fruit does a poor job of ripening on the kitchen counter. The spiced syrup involves little more challenge than assembling the ingredients and heating them together. The result is an elegant dessert with almost no effort.
Total Timeunder 1 hour
OccasionCasual Dinner Party, Cooking for a date
Taste and Texturefruity, juicy, spiced, sweet
Type of Dishfruit
- 1 cup water
- 2/3 cup sugar
- Grated zest and juice of 1 lime
- Grated zest of 1 orange
- 2 bay leaves
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
- ½ vanilla bean, split lengthwise
- 2 star anise
- 1 ripe pineapple
- 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil or other mild-tasting vegetable oil
- ¼ cup dark rum
- 4 scoops rum, vanilla, or coconut ice cream
- 2 tablespoons fresh mint leaves cut into very thin strips, for garnish
Combine all the syrup ingredients in a nonreactive saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes. Remove from the heat. Remove the vanilla bean and allow it to cool. When cool enough to handle, scrape the seeds into the syrup. Discard the pod or save for another use.
Prepare a medium fire in a grill. (A grill is medium when you can hold your hand close to the cooking surface for a count of 4 before having to pull it away.)
Chop off the pineapple flower (the sprout of spiky leaves) and the top inch or so of the fruit. Cut a slice off the bottom of the pineapple so it will stand upright. Slice off the skin in long vertical strips. If there are any “eyes” remaining, cut them out with a paring knife or potato peeler. If you have a pineapple corer, use it to remove the core, then lay the fruit on its side and cut eight ½-inch-thick slices. If you don’t have a corer, just turn the pineapple on its side and cut the 8 slices, then use a paring knife or cookie cutter to remove the woody core at the center of each slice. (Reserve any remaining pineapple for another use.)
Brush the pineapple rings with the oil and grill on both sides until lightly charred, about 5 minutes per side.
Arrange 2 pineapple rings on each plate. Pour a tablespoon of rum over each set of rings, then drizzle with the spiced syrup. Add a scoop of ice cream to each plate. Sprinkle with the strips of mint and serve.
2002 Jody Adams and Ken Rivard