Grapefruit with Vanilla-Honey and Coconut

January  2, 2014

Each Thursday, Emily Vikre (a.k.a fiveandspice) will be sharing a new way to love breakfast -- because breakfast isn't just the most important meal of the day. It's also the most awesome.

Today: What you really want to eat right now.

Grapefruit from Food52

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‘Tis the season of good intentions, of swearing you’ll keep a diary this time and be nicer to your in-laws, of renewing gym memberships and doing juice cleanses. There are few things that get my nose more out of joint than “cleanses.” I’ll spare you my lecture -- though I swear it’s a really riveting lecture, full of trenchant observations and vehement pronouncements -- and just say that the idea that we can or should cleanse to somehow make up for eating badly all the rest of the time seems to me symptomatic of a culturally-disordered attitude toward food. Clean food and indulgent food aren’t actually opposites, and I think we should take an approach toward food that is always thoughtful or intentional regardless of the season. Just think about what you want before you eat -- sometimes you find you really do want a piece of cake, sometimes you’d rather have the feeling you get from eating miso soup -- don’t waffle between a free-for-all and restrictive cleansing.

Phew. Okay. That wasn’t a lecture, was it? It was maybe kind of a lecture. Sorry. Anyway, here I am saying I don’t like cleanses, and now I’m going to go ahead and offer a breakfast that looks suspiciously like cleanse food. Grapefruit is practically the poster child for dieting intentions gone awry, a dubious honor it shares with cabbage soup and celery. But in the dead of winter, grapefruit is also really, really good. I find eating grapefruit wonderfully invigorating, the way it gives you bracing bitter and juicy sweet all wrapped up in a single colorful fruit. And, after a week of eating cookies at most breakfasts, grapefruit was what I discovered my body really wanted.

Supreming a grapefruit in the morning may seem like a lot of effort, but I find it easier than trying to dig out all the meaty bits with a spoon. Plus it looks so pretty! I drizzled my grapefruit slices with a warm, caramel honey sauce flecked with vanilla beans. Then I topped it with toasted coconut to give it crunch and a little more staying power. Maybe it was cleansing, maybe it wasn’t. It tasted fantastic, and I’m feeling ready for the New Year!

Grapefruit from Food52

Grapefruit with Vanilla-Honey and Coconut

Serves 4

1/3 cup unsweetened, shredded coconut
4 ruby grapefruits
1/3 cup honey
2 tablespoons salted butter
1/2 vanilla bean
Yogurt for serving, if desired

See the full recipe (and save and print it) here.

Photos by Emily Vikre

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I like to say I'm a lazy iron chef (I just cook with what I have around), renegade nutritionist, food policy wonk, and inveterate butter and cream enthusiast! My husband and I own a craft distillery in Northern Minnesota called Vikre Distillery (, where I claimed the title, "arbiter of taste." I also have a doctorate in food policy, for which I studied the changes in diet and health of new immigrants after they come to the United States. I myself am a Norwegian-American dual citizen. So I have a lot of Scandinavian pride, which especially shines through in my cooking on special holidays. Beyond loving all facets of food, I'm a Renaissance woman (translation: bad at focusing), dabbling in a variety of artistic and scientific endeavors.


Elana C. January 2, 2014
I had no idea it was called "supreming" -- love that, never using "segmenting" again!
scarymonster January 2, 2014
Soooo. What do I eat after I finish the grapefruit?
fiveandspice January 2, 2014
Hahahaha. I reccomend this: OR maybe these:
Cristina S. January 2, 2014
Yes, yes, 100% yes. I agree wholeheartedly with everything said here, and would not mind reading the full and unabridged lecture either.
Kenzi W. January 2, 2014
Ditto! We're all with you, fiveandspice.
fiveandspice January 2, 2014
Ha, thanks guys! Well, if you must, here's a version of it :)
TerryKes January 2, 2014
I supreme my grapefruits for breakfast all winter long, and since I have all those ingredients on hand, I know what's for breakfast tomorrow. BTW: FOOD52 photos are THE BEST. They'd make Ghandi break a fast.
fiveandspice January 2, 2014
Thank you!!