A Lesson in Sharing: Grapefruit Ginger Brûlée

By Jeannette Ordas of Everybody likes Sandwiches

I was always a grapefruit fanatic. I think it has something to do with my mom's midnight grapefruit pregnancy cravings that she got when she was pregnant with me. I love eating grapefruit right out of the fridge, cold and juicy and full of that wonderful pucker. I eat one half for breakfast and save the other half in the fridge for a refreshing pick-me-up later on in the day.

My husband, on the other hand, doesn't share my grapefruit love. It's too sour, too bitter, blah, blah, blah. So I was surprised a few years ago when we stayed at a fancy bed and breakfast that he ate all his grapefruit. He didn't just eat it, he loved it. You see, the trick was that it was covered in sugar and then bruleed…which is just a fancy name for burned or caramelized sugar. 

It's super easy to make at home and it works best if you've got a kitchen blowtorch or a gas oven broiler. Unfortunately, I have to make do with the broiler in my electric oven, but that's okay too – but it doesn't give the sugar a crispy, burnt crust. 

This morning I got fancy with my grapefruit and broiled it with a little ginger tossed into the sugar mix. I used half fresh grated ginger and half powdered ginger because my fresh ginger was a tiny stub and felt I needed to add a bit more of that ginger flavour. Finely chopped candied ginger would be excellent here too. I also added a bit of sea salt to counteract the sweet and help balance out the bitterness. 

I used one grapefruit here - half for me, half for the husband. He loved it. I'm guessing I'm going to have to start sharing my grapefruit halves from now on. 

Wait, who said this was a good idea?

Grapefruit Ginger Brûlée
1 grapefruit
2-3 tablespoons brown sugar or raw coarse sugar
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon of fresh ginger (powdered or candied ginger works too)
pinch of flakey sea salt

Cut your grapefruit crosswise, removing all seeds and cut round the edges and between each segment. 

In a small bowl, mix the sugar, ginger and salt together and then spoon over each grapefruit. Place on a baking sheet (wipe off any excess fallen sugar from the sheet to prevent scorching) and heat under your broiler for 5-8 minutes until the sugar melts and the edges get cripsy. Or if you've got a blowtorch, use that to melt the sugar to form a golden brown and crispy surface. Serve immediately.

Jan Halvarson


Unknown said...

I love grapefruit but will certainly be trying this version.Thanks for the tip :)

Vicki x

Isabel said...

I have eaten grilled grapefruit in a hotel in Sweden with some cinnamon mixed with the sugar. Also that was a very nice combination.

aiza said...

This looks DELICIOUS!!
Must try! Thanks for sharing :)

Lady Grey said...

this is such an amazing idea, I can't wait to try it!

Razi said...

Matthew Evans (Australian former chef, food critic, now food producer), in his book 'The Real Food Companion', regarding a grapefruit and brown sugar recipe asks ''Did anyone say something about a splash of rum?".

I highly recommend the book. And the rum.

Sixpence and A Blue Moon said...

I can so relate, like you, I love grapefruit and eat them the same way you do. I am also a ginger lover and going to try this method with the brown sugar and ginger, broiled under the oven.

Thanks for the idea.