Did you know that from now until March, it's the season for Florida grapefruits and they are currently at their peak taste and juiciness? I also learnt that they are real powerhouses of vitamins - they are fat free, cholesterol free and high in fibre; one half of a Florida Grapefruit is only 60 calories; each Florida Grapefruit is packed full of vitamins, iron and essential anti-oxidants that help give your immune system a much needed kick start this winter; one Florida Grapefruit provides 100% of your recommended daily allowance of vitamin C.
Florida’s grapefruit has teamed up with chef Gizzi Erskine to offer inspiration on how to use Florida Grapefruit in a host of sweet and savoury dishes and they asked me to try to recreate one of them. This dish leapt out at me because it contains so many contrasting flavours but they all work really well together. The grapefruit is so juicy that I recommend you roll up your sleeves when eating it though - I had juice running up to my elbows ! It's a real taste of Florida sunshine on a plate.
Bajan Prawn tacos with pink Florida grapefruit, avocado and black beans
Gizzi says : Grapefruit and seafood is not a radical combination. While researching these recipes, I learnt that it’s something that we’ve been seeing since the 70s. Prawn and grapefruit is as retro as you could hope for. The irony of this is that while in Los Angeles recently, the home of setting food trends, this combo was in many a dish. The best way I had them was with big fat plump raw prawns, quick marinated in all the great things for prawns; garlic, chilli, cumin, coriander and paprika, then charred and served with a whole bunch of fantastic and fresh usual suspects for the perfect taco, but with pink Florida grapefruit being the hero
Makes 4 tacos (serves 2)
Preparation time 25 minutes
Cooking time 10 minutes
For the prawns:
12 big fat raw tiger prawns, peeled and slit deeply down the back almost to butterfly them,
1 tbsp olive oil
2 cloves garlic, grated finely
1 red chilli, chopped
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
For the tacos:
4 corn tortillas
1/2 little gem lettuce, thinly shredded
6 radishes, thinly sliced.
1 Florida pink grapefruit, segmented and cut into small pieces.
1 avocado, peeled seeded and finely chopped
100g tinned black beans, drained and rinsed.
The juice 1 lime
40g feta cheese
A good handful of fresh coriander, leaves picked
Hot sauce and soured cream to serve
First start by making the marinade for the prawns. Mix together the oil, garlic, chilli (with or without the seeds), salt and spices. (I cheated and used garlic puree and chilli paste as a shortcut.)
Add the prawns and mix it all up so they are well covered in marinade. Cover and leave in the fridge whilst you prepare the other ingredients.
Next make the salad. Mix the shredded lettuce, radishes, Florida grapefruit, beans, lime juice and salt in a bowl. (I used red kidney beans in place of black beans because I had some in the cupboard.) Heat the tacos then line with the sald.
Fry the prawns in a little more oil on a medium to high heat, until cooked through, (this should take about 5 minutes, you’ll know they’re cooked when they change from grey and translucent to white and opaque). (Mine were precooked so I just tossed them in a pan with the marinade until they were warmed through.)
Top with the prawns, some avocado and, if you like, a dollop of sour cream and a nice scattering of coriander.
Follow with a squeeze of lime juice and finally crumble on a little of the feta.
Yum ! Enjoy but don't forget the napkins !
For more information on sweet and juicy Florida Grapefruit go to: www.facebook.com/floridagrapefruit
Disclosure : I received some Florida grapefruit and a shopping voucher in order to recreate one of the recipes.