It’s the middle of the week and ridiculously cold outside so I’m working from home and looking for something to pull together for brunch. Broiled grapefruit seems like a perfect idea! This brunch recipe has been around for decades with many variations on this simple yet elegant dish. Some recipes call for simply a sprinkling of white sugar across the top of the grapefruit before broiling while others use a blend of honey, butter, cinnamon and sugar before topping it with a grilled chicken liver. The chicken liver is a bit much and probably don’t have any on hand so I’m going with a more traditional version.
The Texas Red Grapefruit is the official fruit of Texas and has been grown in the state for over 100 years. Texas is one of the top producers in the US of this sweet and slightly tart citrus fruit. When we were kids my Mom and Dad often ordered grapefruit from a producer in the Rio Grande Valley – these midwinter citrus fruit weren’t always readily available in a small town market. The grapefruit arrived boxed, nestled in wrapping paper and were always plump, sweet and beautiful.
When selecting any citrus look for fruit that are plump and “heavy”. Pick up several and compare, you’ll be surprised at the difference. Store them in the refrigerator, since you’ll want them well chilled for this dish. The contrast between the warm, melted sugar and the chilled fruit beneath is part of the magic.
This version of broiled grapefruit includes brown sugar, ground cinnamon, ground mace, butter and if you’re after the truly classic version, they’re topped with a maraschino cherry. Broiled grapefruit comes together quickly, cooking in about 10 minutes. Take a few minutes to section your grapefruit before broiling – your guests will appreciate the special touch!
2 large grapefruit, halved and well chilled
¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground mace (use nutmeg if you don’t have mace on hand)
2 tablespoons butter
4 maraschino cherries for garnish, optional
Using a sharp paring knife, cut around the outside between the fruit and the white membrane then cut around each section of fruit. Place the grapefruit in a baking dish.
Combine the brown sugar, the cinnamon and mace in a small bowl, whisking to blend well.
Sprinkle the mixture evenly over the tops of the grapefruit halves.
Cut the butter into pieces and dot each with a half-tablespoon.
Place the oven rack in the second position from the top – you want the fruit about 4” from the heat. Broil the grapefruit for about 10 minutes until the sugar has melted completely.
Garnish with a maraschino cherry if desired and serve warm.