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Bruléed Grapefruit

Bruléed Grapefruit

Simple pleasures bring small bursts of happiness into my life. So often I see people wait for happiness to come to them, to rush in and bring them bursts of joy. While happiness may sometimes sweep in like a wave crashing on the beach, more often than not I watch people sitting on the shore, dipping their toes into the water and wishing for more. I have found myself on that very same beach before, waiting for life to bring me something I could not find on my own. Instead of bringing what you desire, the waiting takes it from you, drawing it out to sea and leaving you in its wake, washed up on the shore.

Eventually, I could not wait anymore. Happiness, it seems, was something I'd have to make for myself.

Bruléed Grapefruit Bruléed Grapefruit

It is not hard to find happiness in your own life, but some moments you may have to dig a little deeper to find it. I try to find my joy in the small pleasures of everyday life, to build happiness between the beams in the structure of my life. I wear fuzzy socks and lounge on the couch because it makes me feel content. I light candles at night and enjoy the flames dancing around a dark room because I deserve to see beauty. I buy rusted spoons and thrift store plates because these simple items bring me a silly amount of joy. I buy the expensive dairy-free butter because I finally decided I am worth the cost.

I eat chocolate every single day (and I will never apologize for it).

Bruléed Grapefruit

These small moments bring me happiness. I had to find happiness on my own terms, to remind myself that happiness surrounds me, to open my eyes to the world around me. I had to stop wishing and take action. When I feel myself crossing the sands back to the beach, I go to the gym and take my emotions out on the elliptical machine. I knead my frustration into bread dough and bake it into something delicious. Happiness in a conscious decision.

Where do you find the happiness in your life?

Bruléed Grapefruit

Bruléed Grapefruit is one of my simple, joyful pleasures. I like to enjoy one for a sweet breakfast or a bright afternoon snack. A grapefruit is sliced in half, sprinkled with spices and brown sugar, and broiled until the sugar melts into a sweet syrup. A dash of cinnamon and cloves brings a unique warmth to the tart grapefruit, which I find quite welcoming. Whether you serve one or two, Bruléed Grapefruit is a warm treat that adds a spark of energy to the quiet citrus fruit.

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Bruléed Grapefruit

Yields 1-2 servings

1 ripe grapefruit, cut in half
2 tablespoons brown sugar, packed
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of cloves

Loosen grapefruit segments slightly with a paring knife or spoon, cutting only an inch down. Place grapefruits cut side up onto a baking sheet.

In a small bowl, mix together the brown sugar and spices. Spread evenly over the top of the halved grapefruits. Place the baking sheet on the top shelf of the oven and broil the grapefruits for 4-6 minutes, or until the sugar has completely melted. Watch very closely! Alternatively, you can use a kitchen torch and melt the sugar, though it will not heat the grapefruits as thoroughly.

Serve immediately.

Reader Comments (15)

For those of us without a "broil" setting, what temperature would you suggest?
01.27.2013 | Unregistered CommenterEm
Em-- Unfortunately, there is no substitute for a broiler. Broilers focus all the heat from the top element in the oven and give none from the bottom (this is what melts and hardens the sugar on the grapefruit). If you simply put it in the oven you would not get this effect at all (just a really hot grapefruit). My suggest to you is to use a kitchen torch (blow torches also work nicely) and melt the sugar on the top of grapefruit. If you don't have one, see if you can borrow one from a neighbor--they aren't too hard to find.
01.27.2013 | Registered CommenterKristin Rosenau
Dairy-free butter???
01.27.2013 | Unregistered CommenterKristin
Kristin-- I am lactose-intolerant so butter isn't really an option for me when I want to bake (go figure, right?). I buy "Earth Balance Vegan Buttery Sticks" instead of butter when baking. It's like margarine/shortening cross, but it tastes just like butter to me, has an identical texture to real butter, and works wonderfully in baking.
01.27.2013 | Registered CommenterKristin Rosenau
This is beautifully written, Kristin. Happiness is much easier to find when you're not afraid to go after it. Lovely post!
01.27.2013 | Unregistered CommenterKatie
Just recently, a friend of mine mentioned brulee-ing grapefruit to me and I had never heard of doing that before. Now I am entirely intrigued and will have to give it a try in the morning.
01.27.2013 | Unregistered CommenterKatie
I noticed someone above mentioned not having a broiler. I made this recipe in a cast iron pan from the NY Times last week and it work amazingly well. You just have to make sure your grapefruit is really dry or the melted sugar will not stick.
01.27.2013 | Unregistered CommenterNicole
Nicole-- Thanks for the help!
01.27.2013 | Registered CommenterKristin Rosenau
I think you are having not only a pastry affair, but also an affair with the monsieur writing, I like how you speak about happiness :) and I envy you for that piece of daily chocolate:* I have to try this recipe, sounds healthy and tasty ;)
01.28.2013 | Unregistered Commenterfashionsensitive
Your posts cause me no endless amount of joy. I've been trying to find happiness in every day activities more and more, your words beautifully and eloquently echo the sentiments I've been feeling. And the grapefruit looks delicious to boot!
Probably worth mentioning that broil is American for grill :)
A little cooks' blow torch would do the job but I imagine someone without a grill is unlikely to have one of those!
01.28.2013 | Unregistered CommenterSarah
I couldn't agree more with your beautiful written essay about happiness. I myself do often quiet my mind by kneading bread or inhaling the smell of freshly cut herbs. And I'm certainly going to try out this recipe. Sounds just delicious! Thanks!
01.28.2013 | Unregistered Commenterverena
A great post with fantastic photos as always. Love your work as always, Kristin.
01.28.2013 | Unregistered CommenterSarah
God this is some of the best food photography on the internet! Amazing work :)
01.30.2013 | Unregistered CommenterMaria
I eat grapefruit with sugar and cinnamon, but I never bake it. Great idea.

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