This tropical citrus fruit grows in great abundance in Arizona, California, Florida and Texas. Its name comes from the fact that the grapefruit grows in grapelike clusters. There are two main categories of grapefruit — seeded and seedless. They're also broken into color classifications — white, which has a yellowish-white flesh, and pink, the flesh of which can range from pale yellow-pink to brilliant ruby red. Pink grapefruit has a higher amount of vitamin A than does the white. The skins of all varieties of grapefruit are yellow, some with a pink blush. Fresh grapefruit is available year-round — those from Arizona and California are in the market from about January through August; Florida and Texas grapefruits usually arrive around October and last through June. Choose grapefruit that have thin, fine-textured, brightly colored skin. They should be firm yet springy when held in the palm and pressed. The heavier they are for their size, the juicier they'll be. Do not store grapefruit at room temperature for more than a day or two. They keep best (up to two weeks) when wrapped in a plastic bag and placed in the vegetable drawer of the refrigerator. Grapefruit is usually eaten fresh, either halved or segmented and used in salads. It can also be sprinkled with brown sugar and broiled. Canned and frozen forms of grapefruit are available in segments or juice. Grapefruit is a good source of vitamin C.

From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.

Next Up

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