Bitter Sweet Symphony

Of all the citrus, grapefruit was Hunter S. Thompson’s favorite. He would eat a huge bowl of them for breakfast each morning along with a steady diet of less savory, likely illegal consumables. If you’ve seen the film of his book Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, you may remember a fairly hilarious scene involving a large Bowie knife and a bowl full of grapefruit. 

Late winter citrus is a true delight. While the grapefruit season more or less begins at the end of Christmas, but this fruit is still going strong in February, with a bit of added sweetness thanks to a longer hang time on the vine. Chefs like to play with the bitterness of this fruit in salads, but most people prefer them to be a little sweeter. This is why farmers have grown so many varietals that have a higher sugar content. However, the slightly sharper red and Ruby red grapefruits are very popular, especially for cocktail mixers. If you want to add an interesting layer to a meat marinade, replace half the citrus juice your recipe calls for with grapefruit.

Grapefruit holds a major dose of vitamin C, which supports the immune system in winter. It also contains lycopene, an antioxidant that helps prevent disease. Grapefruit seed extract is thought to have antibacterial properties, providing another seasonal boost.