Grapefruit

Grapefruit

Plural:
Grapefruits
Family:
Rutaceae – Citrus Family
Species:
Citrus paradisi

Plant

From a botanical point of view, grapefruits are like all citrus fruit berries as they grow in clusters and look like enormous grapes. And so the English name is derived from grape.

Origin

It has been the popular breakfast fruit of the Americans for at least 200 years. It probably originates in the Caribbean from a natural crossbreeding between oranges (Citrus sinensis) and shaddocks (Citrus grandis). From the beginning of the 19th Century, the term grapefruit emerged in Barbados and Jamaica. At approximately the same time, the French introduced it into Florida; in around 1880 the commercial cultivation of it began in the USA.

Cultivation

Today, grapefruits grow just about everywhere other citrus fruits are cultivated; the US States of Florida, California, Texas and Arizona grow about 60 % of world production.

Importations

They are imported all year round from the USA, Israel, Spain, Turkey, Cyprus, South America and countries in southern Africa.

Fruit

Edible:
The flesh.
Inedible:
The peel.
Odeur:
It is sourish with a peel that smells of citrus.
Flavour:
Sweet and sourish with a bitterly harsh aroma.
Size:
They grow to about 10 to 15 cm in diameter.
Shape:
Round.
Bowl:
This depends on the variety, they can be light-yellow to reddish-yellow, thick in the middle, firm, fine pored and smooth.
Flesh:
This also depends on variety, it can be yellow or pink, seedless or with some seeds and very juicy.
Ripeness:
The fruits lie pleasantly soft in the hand.
Overripe fruits:
begin to putrefy.
Unripe fruits:
They are hard, very sourand fibrous.

Usage

It may be spooned out and eaten or used in sweet dishes and hearty salads. It can also be steamed as a compote with ice-cream and pancakes, stewed in curry dishes with light-coloured meat, boiled down with oranges as jam or squeezed for beverages.

Storage

Ripe fruits may be stored for approximately 14 days at room temperature. Like all other citrus fruits, grapefruits do not continue to ripen after harvest.