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Making a Piña Colada at home is an easy and obtainable drink for many to become comfortable with. It reminds me of a tropical paradise we escape to for moments on the sand. Moderation is key with this sugary drink however, it helps to remove the alcohol if watching what you consume. In this recipe, that’s exactly what we’ll achieve.
If making it a virgin piña colada, I’ve noted below how to get that alcohol taste. This elevated piña colada is created with nutrient-dense ingredients. Blackstrap molasses (rum flavor,) vanilla, pineapple, coconut milk, grapefruit, pitaya, mango, and lemon create a delicious and unique drink!
What Is Pitaya And Why Is It In My Piña Colada?
Pitaya is also referred to as dragonfruit. Dragonfruit’s direct translation is ‘fruta del dragon’ in Spanish however its common name is “pitaya” in most Spanish-speaking locations. It provides dishes with a deep magenta color with minimal flavor if you’re lucky enough to get a magenta inside! Pitaya also fruits with a white and pink interior, showing very little clues to the difference between them from itsexterior. It is mild in taste for this elevated piña colada which allows for the traditional flavors to shine! In this Piña Colada recipe, we’re combining it with coconut which gives it a rich baby pink coloration.
What Causes Pineapple Sensitivity In Pina Coladas?
In a recipe that contains pineapple such as this piña colada, it may leave an acidic or an irritated mouth is due to the presence of bromelain which is an enzyme that often causes this sensation. Bromelain is a protein-digesting enzyme which often perks our tongue, cheeks, and lips in an unpleasant way. Luckily, this is not an allergic reaction but more-so a naturally occurring reaction from the enzyme and coupling acidity from pineapple.
Additionally, if you have mast cell activation syndrome or histamine intolerance, this is a recipe for disaster if you don’t span out your histamine intake. Bromelain is a natural anti-histamine but with the makeup of the pineapple being high in histamine, they often counteract each other for MCAS patients. If you are not harmed by histamine, your susceptibility to potential reactions is very low with this recipe.
What can you do to combat this burning sensation?
- Don’t consume pineapple when you are sick. When your immune system is compromised the burning sensation may be heightened. This could be due to the tenderness of your mouth, throat, or lungs as well as antibiotics that can cause mouth sensitivities for some people.
- Cook the pineapple. Cooking the pineapple may help to reduce the acidity from reducing the enzyme while also boosting the sugar content. This is a great choice for this recipe if you are able to cook and then freeze.
- Pair with a protein of some kind. This can be plant-based or dairy-based. If using a protein in combination with the pineapple it will allow the enzyme to feed on another protein!
- Reduce the pineapple sugar content with other sugar options. By using less of the pineapple you reduce the bromelain content while increasing the sugar content that’s necessary for this drink.
Pitaya Piña Colada
- 1/8-1/4 tsp Cinnamon remove if MCAS patient (if it's a histamine trigger!)
- 2-3 cups RIPE frozen Pineapple
- 1 tsp Black Strap Molasses
- 1/2-2 tsp Lemon Juice
- 1/4 cup Grapefruit juice
- 1/2 packet Frozen Pitaya I've linked the one I use above!
- 1 cup Frozen Mango
- 2/3 cup Canned full fat coconut milk Feel free to add more if you'd like!
- 1/2 Madagascar vanilla bean paste
- 1/2 cup Pineapple juice Sweetness can be boosted
- 1 cup Ice
- Limes for decorating!
- Wash all of your produce and dice in medium pieces once it's ripe enough. Freeze over night if possible or for at least a few hours. To acheive that piña colada texture, it helps for the produce to be frozen. (Read the notes on how to properly freeze below)
- Save the top of your pineapple and use the leaves for decoration, plucking the nicest ones and washing any excess dirt off of them. If you would like to save a few pieces of pineapple, be sure to cut one slice off prior to removing the exterior.
- Next, remove the end of your vanilla bean and discard. Follow with a pairing knife and gently slice into one side of the bean and running the horizontal side of the knife down the bean to remove the vanilla bean paste.
- Add all of your ingredients to a blender and pulse to combine fully. (Save a small portion of coconut milk to add to the top if desired.)
- Serve in your glass of choice, add your pineapple leaves, pineapple, lime wedge, and a drop or two of coconut milk. Swirl, stir & enjoy!
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