Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Citrus lovin...

Well, I'm back. Spent my entire vacation sniffling and croaking like a frog, while wading through slushy streets following a nasty snowstorm. It was awesome, I'm sure. The best part was how many people felt it necessary to cup their hand over their ear when talking to me and say, "I'm sorry, you'll have to speak up. I can't hear you," before "hilariously" breaking out into guffaws. Har har.
Moving on, though, good thing I love me some citrus because I've sure had my share of Vitamin C the past couple weeks trying to get rid of this pesky flu. While I was looking up grapefruit-related recipes a few days ago, I realized that February is actually "National Grapefruit Month." Saweet! For all you budding chefs out there, here's your chance to win a free trip to Florida.
Turns out the Florida Department of Citrus is hosting a "How Sweet is Your Love" for Florida grapefruit contest. Whether it relates to breakfast, dinner, dessert or a non-alcoholic beverage, you must submit a grapefruit-inspired recipe by Feb. 29 (Friday) to participate. The recipe should contain one-half of a Florida grapefruit or at least 8-ounces of 100 percent grapefruit juice. Submissions will be judged by Jennifer Iserloh, aka the Skinny Chef, next month. The winner will receive $1,000 and a trip to Florida spent whipping up recipes with Iserloh at the Florida Culinary Institute. Second and third-place winners will receive smaller cash prizes.
If a free trip to sunny FL isn't incentive enough, how about the health benefits of consuming more grapefruit? In addition to its antioxidant powers, one grapefruit provides about 25 percent of your daily fiber needs. Pink and red varieties also contain lycopene, which is associated with reduced risk of cancer and heart disease.
Still not sold? Here's more.
Grapefruits offer potassium and folate, which are important nutrients for pregnant women and may help ward off depression and memory loss. The vitamin C found in both fresh grapefruit and grapefruit jucie is essential for collagen production, which can support healthy, smooth-looking skin.
To help get you started, I'm including a few low-cal, sucralose-sweetened grapefruit recipes. Good luck to anyone participating!

Grapefruit Raspberry Sparkler

Grapefruit and Chicken Salad

Fresh Grapefruit Pie

Warm Grapefruit Tea

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