The British thought the fruit's bumpy, diamond-shaped pattern resembled a pine come and sol called it pineapple.  Fresh pineapple is available year-round.

Pineapples must be picked ripe because, once off the tree, the starch will not turn to sugar.  Choose pineapple that is plump and slightly soft to the touch.  the stem end should have a sweet aroma.  Fresh, deep-green leaves are a good sign.  Store whole ripe pineapples, tighly sealed, in the refrigerator for up to 3 days,  Once cut, tightly sealed pineapple can remain in the refrigerator for 3 more days. 

To prepare pineapple, cut a thick slice from the top and the bottom.  Pare skin from the top downward.  Next remove the eyes by cutting diagonal grooves.  Finally, cut into eighths and remove the core section from each.