Tips for picking a ripe pineapple: There are a couple of fresh fruits that you take a gamble on. Watermelon, cantaloupe, honeydew melon — it's tough to know what's going on inside, and sometimes the flesh is too soft or too hard to be enjoyed. Add pineapple to that list. This is the one that we tend to have the most trouble with, so we set out to perfect some tips for choosing a ripe pineapple. First, look for a dark green top and shiny skin. Next, pick it up and make sure it feels heavy for its size. Large, soft spots are a red flag. If the pineapple gives off a potent fragrance, it is probably overripe, though it should smell lightly of pineapple at its base. And just because it's green doesn't mean it's not yet ripe; a pineapple's skin can have a variety of colors when it's ready to eat.
Michelle Stark, Times food editor