Recipe Corner Cooking Techniques

Grapefruit Are a Secret Citrus Booster

The bright, citrusy scent of grapefruit often accompanies the start of a new day -- or a new diet. Although the fruit is a staple for breakfast menus and weight-loss plans alike, there's more to grapefruit than meets the serrated spoon.

You already know about grapefruit's immune-boosting vitamin C content, which is its own fabulous reason to indulge in citrus foods during cold and flu season, but did you know about its other benefits?

This juicy ball of tartness is associated with motivation, awakening -- essentially, getting things going -- an idea that has merit. In aromatherapy, grapefruit is valued for its stimulating and mood-elevating properties. Just the distinctive fragrance alone is enough to perk you up, a handy tip for beating the winter blues or staying alert (sans caffeine!) throughout the day.

Now, it's worth bearing in mind that the sunny fruit does have a shadowy side: it can enhance the effects of certain prescription medications, so do check with a pharmacist or healthcare practitioner if you are taking medicine.

If medication isn't an issue, then you're in for a tangy treat!  Grapefruit makes a nice addition to dishes that call for other citrus fruit, such as lemons and oranges: grapefruit's flavor tends to brighten the other citrusy notes of the dish without overpowering them.

For example, here's a clever salad, courtesy of TexaSweet, that combines grapefruit and lemon -- and only takes about 15 minutes:

Grapefruit

Grapefruit & Avocado Salad

Ingredients

2 grapefruit (Texas Rio Star), sectioned with juice reserved
2 avocados, halved lengthwise and pitted  
2 teaspoons fresh tarragon, chopped 
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
      (set aside 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice)
¼ cup olive oil
¾ teaspoon coarse salt
black pepper to taste

Directions

Brush 2 teaspoons lemon juice over flesh of avocados; set aside. Add ¼ cup lemon juice, salt, and tarragon to the reserved grapefruit juice; season with pepper. Whisk in olive oil in a slow, steady stream. Add grapefruit sections and toss gently. Place each avocado half on a plate. Top with grapefruit mixture, dividing evenly. Serve immediately.

To discover other refreshing uses for grapefruit, visit Fiesta's Recipe Corner here.