It Really Is the Best Way to Eat Grapefruit.
For most of my life, I thought I didn’t like grapefruit. I liked the taste – grapefruit seltzer on top – and the aroma, but real fruit? Too bitter, even with sugar sprinkled on top (like my dad always ate it), and too messy (how many times I splashed citrus juice in my eyes while trying to take a bite). But it turned out that I was just doing everything wrong. Grapefruit tends to have a more bitter taste than an orange or lemon, and you can blame this on a chemical known as naringin, a flavonoid found in the skin of many citrus fruits, but much more abundant in grapefruit . All this naringin makes the chewy, fibrous parts of the fruit – the “white substance” or pith – quite bitter in taste. How bitter you find it tastes depends on your genetics . This may mean that grapefruit is not to your liking, but it may simply mean that you are eating too much white.
A few years ago, as a rule, I tried to eat grapefruit with an ordinary old spoon, which is impossible in principle, so that a huge porridge does not form. It also usually meant that I scraped out large portions of the core with each bite, which probably explains why I had a hard time tasting the juice’s sweetness under all that bitterness. (Yes, I knew there were grapefruit spoons , but I never had one because I had no desire to buy utensils designed to eat fruits I didn’t like.) Office kitchen, I decided to try again. Since I didn’t want the juice to fill my entire table, I googled “the easiest way to eat grapefruit” and came across a simple, neat and almost reliable option. This is the first one described in the video below (although the source where I originally found it is lost in time):
In short, as Erica Lea, who also writes about food in Buttered Side Up , explains, before using a spoon to scoop the fruit out of half a grapefruit, you need to use a sharp, serrated knife to cut around and between each section to separate the good material from the bitter membrane. Once you’ve done this enough times, you’ll get pretty good at it – I can cook both halves in about a minute – and if you’ve done your job right, you’ll eat almost all of the juicy pieces. partially and very little substance. Since I’m open-minded, I also tried other methods that Erica describes in her video. She is obviously much more skilled at preparation than I am, but I found the whole thing almost impossible without making a big mess.
- Method 2 (peel and slice like an orange) is complex and time consuming (to me – she describes it as fast, hmm) and you end up eating a lot more of the core.
- Method 3 (cut it into pieces and then cut off the skin) looks nice, but again, leaves a lot of core.
- Method 4 (which is method 2, but you peel each individual section after you separate them) is basically impossible, as the membrane around each section is difficult to remove without damaging the fruit inside.
- Method 5 (Erica’s preferred version) requires a lot of skill with a knife and a lot of tedious coring, and is basically just Method 1 (which I remind you is the best way to eat a grapefruit), but first you have to peel the fruit. I’ll stick with what I know, thanks. But then again, she calls it the “pro” method, and I’m definitely not a pro.