Ode to the GrapefruitAugust 3rd, 2009
As kids, my sister and I would spend every other weekend with our Dad. Not the greatest cook, he would take us to various diners and other eateries for Saturday breakfast. Invariably, Dad would order half a grapefruit, and I remember being hypnotized by his precise slicing around the rim of the fruit and down the sides of each triangular wedge. Finally, with a spoon, he would scoop out his bounty, and pop the grapefruit chunks–perfectly bite-sized by nature–into his big Daddy mouth.
It’s only been recently that I developed a taste for grapefruit. As a little girl, it just seemed bitter. And even though the bitterness came with some serious sweetness, my young tongue couldn’t appreciate that dance of taste. And the fact that the bitterness and sweetness sat on either side of sour…? Well, that just seemed like God doing drugs or something.
But I appreciate the miracle of it now. The grapefruit wins the Triple Crown of fruit by somehow combining sour (Springtime energy), bitter (Summer energy) and sweet (late summer energy). And in so doing, it produces the most fantastic range of taste and satisfaction. Biting into a wedge of grapefruit on a hot, summer day is like letting my head be blown off by fireworks. When I close my eyes and just let my tongue and my brain receive it, the grapefruit delivers a punch perfectly reflective of the sexy, out-of-control, sun-drenched excitement of summer. And I don’t need a lot. Just a few bites does the trick.
Yes, I live in Southern California now, so grapefruits have become local to me. For those of you reading this in a more temperate climate, pick a fruit that’s at its peak right now and let it be that lovely exclamation mark to your day. Close your eyes and hear it speak to you. And if you’re in good health, and the thermometer creeps up into the "holy crap it’s hot" zone, blow your head off with some grapefruit!
FYI: Here’s a radio interview I did recently on Breaking Through with Georgiann