I was brought up eating lots of fruit and vegetables, including plenty of oranges and other citrus fruits, but grapefruit wasn’t part of our diet growing up, and I must confess I have never bought grapefruit before.
Florida grapefruit is working with Celebrity Masterchef winner Liz McClarnon to offer some inspiration on how to bring a little sunshine to UK plates by creating a series of easy to prepare and totally delicious recipes featuring Florida grapefruit.
When I heard about the cookery demonstration with Liz McClarnon to celebrate the start of the Florida Grapefruit season, I thought it would be a great opportunity to find out more about how to use grapefruit and incorporate it into our diet.
When we arrived, we were told of the health benefits of having grapefruit as part of a balanced diet. Grapefruit is packed with vitamins and half of a medium grapefruit contains 100% of the recommended daily amount of vitamin C.
It also has other nutrients, such as vitamin A, potassium and fibre. Grapefruit can be enjoyed as a breakfast treat, blended as juice, or incorporated into sweet and savoury recipes.
Our first task was to segment a grapefruit, I thought I would struggle with the task, but it was similar to segmenting an orange. We then tasted pieces of Florida grapefruit and it was surprisingly sweet and juicy.
Despite grapefruit having a reputation for being tart, Florida grapefruit has a sweet, tangy flavour. Ripened in the glorious Florida climate, the fruit is typically juicier than grapefruit grown in other locations.
During the cookery demonstration, Liz McClarnon prepared a three course meal using Florida grapefruit, in a bid to get us to taste the sunshine this winter. The first dish was Honeyed Florida Grapefruit with Pancetta, Goats Cheese and Pine Nuts. The caramelised Florida grapefruit added a lovely touch to the salad, making it an ideal starter packed with vitamin C and vitamin D.
The next dish was Florida Grapefruit Fajitas Platter with Sunny Salad. I really like fajitas, you can add any meat and vegetables that you fancy for your very own fajitas. Liz marinated the beef in squeezed Florida grapefruit and lime juices, salt and pepper, all-purpose seasoning and olive oil.
The sunny salsa was made using Florida grapefruit peeled and finely chopped together with tomatoes, onion, mild chillies and herbs. The fajitas were delicious, the grapefruit added a lovely taste to the beef and also to salsa. I’ve never thought of using grapefruit to marinate meat before, but I will be considering it next time.
The final dish was Florida Grapefruit, Lime and Mint Sorbet, made simply by mixing cooled sugar water with Florida grapefruit and lime juices and zest, chopped mint over crushed ice. It tasted very similar to a virgin Mojito, I could easily have a few glasses of it. Such a refreshing end to a lovely meal!
The cookery demonstration was very useful, I have learnt how to incorporate Florida Grapefruit into dishes and we will be using it to add a touch of sunshine to our meals. It was a pleasure meeting Liz, she’s lovely and her dishes are very tasty and full of flavour.
Thank you very much to Florida Grapefruit for inviting me and thank you to Karen Bengall Photography for the group shots and the one with Liz and me. For more information and recipes with Florida Grapefruit, please check https://www.facebook.com/FloridaGrapefruitUK