Pink Pineapple Apple Pen? Authorities OK pink pineapples

Pink Pineapple Apple Pen? Authorities OK pink pineapples
Is this what pink pineapples are like? They aren't out on shelves just yet, but here's our take on what the pink-fleshed fruit may look like.
PHOTO: The New Paper / AsiaOne

'Pen Pineapple Apple Pen' by Japanese comedian Pikotaro may be the runaway song in 2016, but pink pineapples look set to take centre stage in 2017.

After an evaluation of pink flesh pineapples by food producer Del Monte, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) concluded that the modified pineapple is as safe and nutritious as its conventional counterpart.

According to the FDA, the pineapples, known as Rosé, have been genetically modified to lower its production of enzymes producing the yellow pigment we are familiar with.

This modification will allow the natural pink pigment, Lycopene, in pineapples to be more apparent.

What your favourite ice-cream flavour says about you

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    If your favourite flavour is Vanilla, you’re more likely to be impulsive, easily suggestible and an idealist.

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    Vanilla lovers rely on secure romantic relationships to redirect their energies toward realistic, obtainable goals.

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    If your favourite flavour is Chocolate, you’re more likely to be dramatic, lively, charming, flirtatious, seductive and gullible. You prefer passion and excitement in your romantic relationships, and require a lot of attention from your mate.

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    If your favourite flavour is Strawberry, you’re more likely to be tolerant, devoted and an introvert. In relationships, strawberry fans are often characterised as shy and reserved.

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    Although they don't fall head-over-heels in love at first sight, once they do commit to a relationship, they are loyal and supportive.

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    If your favourite flavour is Mint Chocolate Chip, you’re more likely to be argumentative, frugal and cautious.

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    While their stubbornness aids them in business, it adds a challenging element to romantic relationships.

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    If your favourite flavour is Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough, you’re more likely to be ambitious, competitive and a visionary.

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    If your favourite flavour is Pralines ‘n Cream, you’re more likely to be loving, supportive and prefer to avoid the spotlight.

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    If your favourite flavour is Coffee, you’re more likely to be scrupulous, conscientious and a moral perfectionist.

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    If your favourite flavour is Chocolate Chip, you’re more likely to be generous, competent and a go-getter.

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    If your favourite flavour is Rainbow Sherbet, you’re more likely to be analytic, decisive and a pessimistic.

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    If your favourite flavour is Rocky Road, you’re more likely to be aggressive, engaging and a good listener. A tip for those in a relationship with a rocky road lover: Despite their success, they are very sensitive to minor slights and respond best to encouragement rather than criticism.

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    If your favourite flavour is Butter Pecan, you're devoted, conscientious, and respectful. Butter pecan fans fear hurting the feelings of others and must be encouraged to express their deepest thoughts.

"Lycopene is the pigment that makes tomatoes red and watermelons pink, so it is commonly and safely consumed," FDA added in its statement.

According to media reports, Del Monte started development of the pink pineapple way back in 2005 to genetically modify the fruit.

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While pink pineapples would be the perfect auspicious fruit for superstitious Chinese, don't expect any pink pineapples hitting our shores anytime soon - at least not in time for Chinese New Year.

To date, there are still no pink pineapples sold on shelves, so all photos you see online have probably undergone digital enhancement, our top photo included.

"Although Del Monte will market this pineapple in the United States, they are not planning on growing it here," FDA noted.

"The company is working with the government of Costa Rica on this matter."

grongloh@sph.com.sg

Ultimate pineapple tart taste test

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    SundayLife! went on a hunt for the best pineapple tarts in town by putting a panel of four judges through a blind taste test.

    We shortlisted 30 brands from a variety of stand-alone bakeries, bakery chains, restaurants and hotels.

    The selection also took into consideration popular brand names and recommendations from the judges.

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    The panel of judges comprises SundayLife!'s restaurant critic Wong Ah Yoke; food writer Foong Woei Wan; Mr Daniel Tay (left), founder of Bakerzin (he sold the business in October 2013), who now runs food creation and development company Foodgnostic; and Mr Daniel Chia (right), president of non-profit organisation Slow Food (Singapore) and culinary and catering lecturer at Temasek Polytechnic.

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    Where: 10 outlets, including 03-58/59 Jurong Point, and 01-05/6/7 Connexion@Farrer Park; open: various opening hours

    Price: $23.80 for 21 pieces

    Info: Go to www.bakerzin.com. Order two days in advance, by March 2. Last day of collection is March 5.

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    The judges like the soft crust that is not dry.

    Mr Wong praises the "balance of sweetness from the pineapple and the spiciness from the cinnamon".

    Noting that the pineapple tart is shaped like a gold ingot, Mr Chia says: "There is a distinctive pineapple flavour and acidity. The crust has a good texture and enough salt."

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    Where: 01-121 Block 3020 Ubi Avenue 2; open: 8am to 6pm daily

    Price: From $23 for 48 pieces

    Info: Call 6742-7168 or go to www.d-pastry.com. While stocks last.

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    The judges like the complex flavours encased in the pineapple tart. Mr Wong says: "It has a nice acidity, the taste is complex and has a lot of different flavours going on - floral, acidic and buttery. This is not your typical tart."

    Mr Tay gives it the thumbs up: "This tart has a balanced flavour. I would buy this."

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    Where: Two outlets, including 47/49 Armenian Street; open: 11.30am to 9.30pm daily (closed from 2.30 to 5pm)

    Price: $33 for a 300g box

    Info: Call 6440-0449 or go to www.truebluecuisine.com. While stocks last. Walk-ins only.

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    The crumbly and nicely salted pastry stands out for the panel. Ms Foong says: "The pastry actually tastes good and has a nice flavour. It is a little bit salty from the butter used. The crust is good, but the pineapple can do with a little more acidity - it is neither sweet nor sour."

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    Next, here are the judges' runners-up.

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    Where: 40 outlets, including B4-38 Ion Orchard, and B1-78/9 Parkway Parade; open: various opening hours

    Price: $19.80 for a 330g box

    Info: Call 6756-9113 or go to www.bengawan solo.com.sg.

    Order at least five days in advance, while stocks last. Last day of collection is Feb 18.

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    Mr Wong likes the buttery and thin pastry of the pineapple tarts.

    Mr Tay says: "I can smell the cheese in the pastry. The flavours are balanced and there's a nice colour on the crust. This is a tart I can eat again."

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    Where: Man Fu Yuan Chinese Restaurant, Level 2; Tea Hut, Level 1; open: Man Fu Yuan, noon to 10.30pm daily (closed from 2.30 to 6.30pm), Tea Hut (till Feb 15), noon to 9pm daily

    Price: $38+ for 20 pieces

    Info: Call 6820-8519/8520 or go to singapore.intercontinental. com/festive. Order two days in advance, last day to order is Feb 15.

    Last day of collection is March 5.

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    The panel likes the balanced flavour of the pineapple - both sweet yet tart.

    Mr Tay says: "I think there is added colouring in the tart. However, I like the pleasant flavour of the pineapple."

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    Where: Pacific Marketplace, Pan Pacific Singapore, Level 1; open: 7am to 10pm daily

    Price: $58+ for 32 pieces

    Info: Call 6826-8240 or go to www.pacificmarketplace.com.sg. Order three days in advance, by March 3. Last day of collection is March 5.

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    The judges note the pleasant pineapple taste with the right amount of acidity.

    This is a good option for those who like bigger portions of pineapple topping.

    Mr Wong says: "The acidity comes through as you chew on it, it gets more and more acidic and finishes off nicely. Similarly for the sourness, as you chew on the filling, it gets more sour. The crumb is quite nice too."

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    Where: 139 East Coast Road; open: 8.30am to 9.30pm daily; and at all FairPrice, Giant and Cold Storage outlets, various opening hours for the supermarkets

    Price: $13.20 for 25 pieces

    Info: Go to www.gloryfood.com.sg. Order three days in advance, by Feb 6.

    Last day of collection is Feb 14 at East Coast. While stocks last at supermarkets.

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    Ms Foong likes the fragrance of the pineapple filling, Mr Tay praises its moist texture and Mr Wong says the pastry has a nice crumbly texture.

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    Where: Three outlets, including 01-01A Bugis Junction; open: 7am to 9pm daily

    Price: $14 for 20 pieces

    Info: Call 6238-1200 or go to harrianns.com.

    Order by Feb 12, two days in advance. Last day of collection is Feb 17.

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    Mr Tay feels that the pineapple is a tad overcooked, adding that overcooking the jam will give a darker caramelised colour to the pineapple.

    Ms Foong says: "It is not bad, but the crust is a bit dry. There isn't much sugar in the pineapple topping, so it is not too gummy."

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    Where: Five locations, including Takashimaya Square, Ngee Ann City, Basement 2; open: 10am to 9.30pm daily (till Feb 17)

    Price: $19.80 for 31 pieces (promotional price till Feb 8, thereafter it is $22.80)

    Info: Call 6710-7886 or go to kele.sg. Order up to three days in advance, by Feb 8. Last day of collection is Feb 17.

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    Ms Foong notes the balance in the pineapple to tart ratio, as well as the buttery crust.

    Mr Wong says: "The crust is soft and crumbly, but it also has a milky taste. I like the texture of the crumb."

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    Where: 531 Upper Cross Street, 01-57 Hong Lim Complex; open: 8.30am to 8pm daily

    Price: $19 for about 30 pieces, $28 for about 48 pieces

    Info: Call 6534-0136. Order by Feb 8. Last day of collection is Feb 14.

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    The judges like the pineapple's tartness, paired with the crumbly pastry.

    Mr Chia says: "The pastry is rather pale-looking. However, I like that the pastry crumbles nicely and is not too soft. It could do with a little more salt to balance the tartness of the pineapple."

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    Artificial-tasting pastry, weak pineapple flavour and a bizarre orange-tinted crust.

    Those were some of the comments from the panelists on pineapple tarts that did not make the cut in the blind taste test.

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    Some of these tarts came from household names such as Balmoral Bakery, Smiling Orchid, Dona Manis Cake Shop, Thye Moh Chan Cake House and Prima Deli.

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    Ms Foong Woei Wan had this to say of the tarts from one well-known bakery chain: "The pastry has a milky taste, which is more suited for children."

    Mr Wong Ah Yoke added: "It just tastes sweet and the pineapple does not come through."

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