Arsip Tag: grapefruit

candied grapefruit peels – smitten kitchen

This all started with Homesick Texan. No wait, this all started with last year’s orangettes, to this day one of the most popular posts on this site. No wait, this all started with a lifelong (can you say that? when you’re just 31?) love of grapefruits. My favorite way to eat them is the same exact way my mom showed me, halved in a bowl with each section loosened with a arched, double-serrated grapefruit knife. First, I’d pop all of the sections into my mouth in probably under two minutes flat. But then, then came the “grapefruit soup,” I’d call it. Mom would help us scrape all of the residual grapefruit bits into the bowl, then squeeeze every last bit of juice, discard the empty shell of a peel and this, this my friends is the best grapefruit juice you’ll ever drink in your life. You must drink it straight from the bowl. I could live on it, and it alone.

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Which brings us to the Homesick Texan, who mentioned in December that “everyone knows the juiciest, largest and sweetest ruby red grapefruit comes from the Rio Grande Valley” and it was funny, because I hadn’t known that at all. But given the price of the grapefruits we’d been seeing in the stores ($2 a pop), their sorry state (dented but still appallingly shiny with wax) and their flavor (average at best) I was just itching to find out. So, we ordered ourselves a little sampler from South Texas Organics and quite a few days later were presented with exactly what we were promised: the very best ruby red grapefruits, from South Texas.

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But the coolest part was their sheen–there wasn’t one. Sans wax, pesticides and all the other you-don’t-want-to-know-whats they spray on most grapefruits, the peels beckoned me. I remembered how delicious those candied orange rinds were and had to go at it again. Using a Jacques Torres recipe as my guide, I boiled them four times. I candied them for two hours. I let them dry out on racks for another two. I rolled them in sugar. My apartment walls still smell dimly of grapefruit oil, and well, sadly, that might be the only good thing that came out of this experiment, save a few pretty photos.

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They are inedibly bitter. I cannot swallow more than a bite. Even half of one and my face looks like one of those babies eating lemon (video removed, such a bummer!), plus or minus a few chin rolls and wrinkles. And I’m so sad about this, because, well, I had some high hopes. I had expected some level of bitterness greater than the oranges, hey, I know these are grapefruits afterall, but I hadn’t expected not to be able to get down a single one. And I love bitter things, as does Alex. But these, these didn’t work. So, if you have had any luck candying grapefruit peels, tell me your secrets, will you? I await your input with bated breath.

candied grapefruit peels

[Jacques Torres’ Candied Grapefruit Peel Recipe, for reference]

Other, more successful smittenkitchen.com citrus desserts:

One year ago: Asparagus, Artichoke and Shiitake Risotto

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pomegranate grapefruit paloma – smitten kitchen

All January and early February, as glacial winds smacked us in our face on the walk to school — and somehow back too (uphill, both ways, etc.) — I counted down the days until we would go to Florida to visit my parents (who winter-as-a-verb there like all the other smart retirees of the Northeast) and thaw our bones for five days. Instead, the warm weather found its way here and apparently it’s been full-out spring while we were away but I’m not mad, how could I be, I was sitting on a beach in the middle of winter and it was exactly what we needed, or at least the 3/4 of us that are willing to let our feet touch the sand. Spotty wi-fi, falling asleep shortly after the kids did each night (one who learned a new word “mom-MEE!”) and great heaps of fresh fruit at the hotel’s breakfast buffet (shamelessly one of my favorite resort things) all contributed to an overall feeling of wellness that I hope to carry with me at least for the next 15 minutes, because I believe in keeping expectations reasonable.


west palmwest palm

[Somewhere in here is a wry observation of how far this is from the kid-free cocktails-on-the-beach style vacations we’ve taken other years, but if there’s anything that the retiree population of Florida makes clear it’s that you get those days back, although you might spend them cooing over other people’s tiny children and telling them how much you miss those exhausting days. I’ll spare you.]

what you'll needsalt rima little stiradd the fizz

Before I left, however, I made us a holiday-ish cocktail that instantly became my new favorite winter thing. We usually think of margaritas as the go-to Mexican cocktail, but the unfussy and unfancy paloma is much more a bar standard, part tequila and part grapefruit-flavored soda (usually Fresca, Squirt or Jarritos), saved on the rocks with a lime wedge, sometimes with a salt rim too. A grapefruit junkie, I like to make it with fresh juice and a splash of lightly sweetened seltzer, but when cleaning out the fridge before we went away I found both a full pomegranate (score!) and pomegranate juice and decided to make a version with both. It was fizzy, dark pink, tart-sweet perfection, all with a proper kick of tequila and I really, really think you should too.

pomegranate grapefruit paloma

Previously

One year ago: White Russian
Two years ago: Spaghetti Pangrattato with Crispy Eggs
Three years ago: Dijon and Cognac Beef Stew
Four years ago: Blood Orange Margaritas
Five years ago: Double Coconut Muffins
Six years ago: Spaghetti with Lemon and Olive Oil
Seven years ago: Monkey Bread with Cream Cheese Glaze and Cauliflower and Caramelized Onion Tart
Eight years ago: Devil’s Chicken Thighs with Braised Leeks and Red Kidney Bean Curry
Nine years ago: Pear and Almond Tart
Ten! years ago: For Beaming Bewitching Breads and Baked Tomato Sauce

And for the other side of the world:
Six Months Ago: Eggplant Parmesan Melts
1.5 Years Ago: Angel Hair Pasta with Raw Tomato Sauce
2.5 Years Ago: Smoky Eggplant Dip and Strawberries and Cream with Graham Crumbles
3.5 Years Ago: Rice-Stuffed Tomatoes and Almond-Crisped Peaches
4.5 Years Ago: Mediterranean Baked Feta with Tomatoes

Pomegranate Grapefruit Paloma

The sugar is optional but trust me, as someone who doesn’t sweet-first cocktails that this is still tart and balanced with it. I don’t skip it. You could make it with all grapefruit juice or you could make it with all pomegranate juice and both work, but if you get a chance to make it with both, I think you’ll find, like us, it’s meant to be. Size-wise, this fit neatly in this 8.65-ounce tumbler. Finally, this combination — fizzy, lightly sweetened pomegranate and grapefruit juice — makes a fine mocktail, just add a bit more fizz and adjust to taste.

  • 2 thin slices or small wedges grapefruit
  • Kosher salt for rim, if desired
  • 2 tablespoons grapefruit juice
  • 2 tablespoons pomegranate juice
  • 1 teaspoon honey, sugar or agave
  • 1/4 cup white tequila
  • About 3 medium-sized ice cubes
  • 1/4 cup club soda or seltzer
  • A few pomegranate arils (for garnish)

If you’d like to salt the rim of you glass, put a little kosher salt on a small plate. Swipe the rim of your glass with a wedge of grapefruit (or a wedge from the emptied grapefruit you’ve just juiced) and place the damp rim in the salt, twisting to coat it.

Place both juices and honey or sugar in the bottom of your glass and use a long spoon to stir it until combined, and/or until the sugar has dissolved. Add tequila, stir to combine. Add ice then club soda or seltzer. Garnish with additional grapefruit slices and pomegranate arils. Repeat as needed.

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