A cross between a sweet orange and a pomelo, grapefruit most likely originated in Barbados in the 1700s. Grapefruit is the largest citrus fruit commonly available and comes in two basic varieties: white-fleshed or pigmented. For the best flavor, buy grapefruit with seeds. The seeded varieties are also easier to separate into segments.
To make grapefruit supremes
When segments of citrus fruit are separated from the membranes holding them together, they are often called supremes. Slice off the top (stem end) just below the pith, then do the same at the bottom. Cut off the zest and white pith in strips all around the fruit keeping the knife just below the pith. Hold the skinless grapefruit in one hand and use a paring knife to cut directly next to the membrane on both sides to remove each segment or supreme. With practice, you can run the knife down one side of the segment, then underneath and up the other side in one swift movement. When all the segments have been removed, squeeze out the juice from the accordion-like membranes left in your hand.
To easily remove the white pith from grapefruit
Drop the whole grapefruit in a pot of boiling water, remove the pot from the heat, and let stand for 3 minutes. Remove the fruit and let cool. Then, peel it; the white pith will easily come off the fruit.
To release maximum juice from grapefruit
Pierce the skin in several places with the tines of a fork. Microwave for 20 seconds on high power. Let stand 2 minutes before using.
To avoid tart grapefruit
If the tartness of grapefruit deters you from eating it, reach for the sweeter hybrids, such as pomelos, oroblancos, or melogolds.
To benefit from the lycopene in grapefruit
Select the red or pink varieties, which are a good source of lycopene, an antioxidant that has been shown to reduce the risk of prostate cancer and heart disease.
To receive maximum nutritional benefits of grapefruit
Peel the fruit and eat it in sections like an orange to get more pectin and fiber. Also try to make use of the peel (also a valuable source of pectin) by grating it and adding to baked goods.
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