I forgot so many items on my list of simple things I’m looking forward to this upcoming year, so a big apology goes out to my grapefruit tree. Those yellow balls are starting to get ugly! Don’t let grocery store wax fool you; a good, ripe grapefruit isn’t pretty…not on the outside anyway. When the grapefruit first look grocery store worthy, their insides match their outsides – yellow like a lemon and just as sour. When they start turning brown and nasty, that’s when I turn into Luke and start licking my chops because there’s nothing but pink, juicy sweetness inside.
And just when I was down to only a head of Romaine and a half a red onion in the vegetable drawer…perfect timing. I left the red onion, grabbed some edamame from the freezer, a bagel from the fridge, and a bottle of Ken’s Steak House Lite Raspberry Walnut Vinaigrette from the cabinet. Voila, the perfect side for a simple London broil. I usually make my own raspberry vinaigrette, but Ken’s is a good substitute on a busy day. Vinaigrette tames the sourness of grapefruit. John and Cooper sadly don’t share my acid-loving palette, so they often find grapefruit too sour even when I think it’s at its best. But I do the cooking, so needless to say, both find vinaigrette helpful this time of year. And we all loved the “in a pinch” bagel croutons – just melted butter and an Everything bagel but so, so tasty.This is just the beginning. We had a terrible yield last season after the incident, and it’s time to make up for the loss. Grapefruit will be sliced, diced, zested, sugared, broiled, thrown into salads, mixed into cocktails, and of course, they will be juiced. Pink grapefruit juice – a girl’s best friend. One of my girlfriend’s bums it like a cigarette, believing it will have the same slimming effect on her figure.I looked up the “grapefruit diet” but it seems to be more of an urban myth than a reputable weight loss plan. The premise is that you either eat half a grapefruit or drink eight ounces of juice with a protein, and an enzyme in the grapefruit causes you to burn fat. I came up with two small studies that indicated weight loss but one was done by the Florida Department of Citrus…perhaps there’s some bias there. And neither pointed to a specific property within the grapefruit that burns fat. Grapefruit has fiber, so it’s filling and low in calories. I’m all for the fruit, but the diet seems to employ the same magical thinking my sister refers to when her teenage daughter shoves her school uniform into the washer 20 minutes before she’s supposed to leave and expects to get to school on time.
What’s not magical thinking is that pink grapefruit contain vitamins A and C, potassium, beta-carotene, calcium, and magnesium. They also contain phytosterols, which are proven to lower cholesterol and reduce the risk of coronary heart disease. Yes, I’m looking forward to a hearty, healthy season.