Many months ago, the first shape for which E learnt the word was ‘circle’. At breakfast one morning, she stared out of the window, pointed, and said ‘circle’. And indeed there were: little spheres sprouting on the tree in our next-door neighbour’s garden.
As the circles grew, so did E’s vocabulary. Other words were added: tree, oranges, and eventually, as citrus spheres ripened from green to yellow, ‘grapefruit’. Since then our neighbour has kindly allowed us to gather little harvests from this tree, and now E may turn to us and request “dada take you in the onbu pick some grapefruit?”
Thank you God for giving growth, change – and fruit.
On the less metaphoric side, little girl’s Mama is now responsible for stewarding a really generous pile of grapefruit. We can only drink so much grapefruit juice (keeping in mind it is yellow grapefruit, the really sour one, not the red, milder one).
We’ve gotten in contact with a local fruit harvesting/distributing charity, but while we’re waiting for things to get sorted we still have a large pile of grapefruit. So for the last few weeks I’ve had the privilege of exploring how to fit a lot more grapefruit into our diet. We’ve tried a variety of ideas. Some have been great, some have been embarrassing, all have been fun.
Today was cookies. The classic sugar cookie (I was using a strict 1:2:3 ratio) requires no liquid, so I had to reduce the grapefruit to as little liquid as possible to avoid ending up with cake or scone. I zested and juiced two grapefruit, then simmered it in a pan to evaporate it into a gel. I then creamed butter and sugar into this gel, spices including salt, and finally flour with baking soda. E cut hearts in the dough with a cookie cutter, and into a hot oven they went until they started to singe.
The result was fun. It looked like shortbread, smelled like shortbread, but tasted like, in William’s words, “that tree out there!” It had a flavour as intense as the filling of a centre-filled cookie, only there was no filling. We kept tasting it (grapefruit!) and then smelling it (shortbread!) repeatedly because it was so bizarre that there was no visual/olfactory/tactile sign of the extreme grapefruityness therein. A pleasant surprise to the end of a busy Saturday.
Other recipes we’ve tried:
- grapefruit, lemon and ??? citrus jam
- grapefruit juice
- grapefruit sorbet
- grapefruit and feta salad
- citrus pasta (grapefruit zest + grapefruit-based dressing)
- grapefruit pancakes
- pumpkin grapefruit and coconut cream soup/pasta (treat grapefruit like tomatoes)
What are your suggestions for how to use grapefruit?