Grilled Radicchio with Bruleed Grapefruit

By em-i-lis
January 12, 2012
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Author Notes: The bitterness of radicchio and the sour-sweetness of grapefruit make for a mutually beneficial flavor pairing. When served warm, the flavors deepen; grilling the radicchio allows it to adopt the grill's smokiness, while bruleeing the grapefruit under a dusting of brown sugar and a hot flame imparts a sense of caramel to the citrus. Add in two secret ingredients -Chinese 5 Spice and very aged Balsamic- and you've got a unique, simple, mysterious burst of flavors.em-i-lis

Makes: 6 appetizer or side portions

  • 1-2 heads radicchio, cut into six 3/4" rounds (try to maintain the "steak" aspect), you won't need all of the radicchio
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • Chinese 5 spice
  • 1 large pink or red grapefruit, skin cut away, fruit cut into six 1/4" - 1/2" rounds
  • 6 tablespoons brown sugar
  • good quality, aged (!) Balsamic, for drizzling
  1. Prepare your grill; you'll want it at medium-high heat. Preheat your broiler to high. Brush your radicchio steaks with olive oil, and season lightly with salt and pepper. Dust lightly with Chinese 5 spice, and place oil- and spice-side down on the hot grill. Grill 3-4 minutes and remove.
  2. In the meantime, place a piece of foil on a baking sheet, put the six grapefruit rounds on it, and put 1 T brown sugar on each grapefruit slice. Place under the broiler for 4-5 minutes until sugar is melted and juices have started to run. Remove from broiler and finish bruleeing with a kitchen torch if you've got it. Otherwise you can leave the fruit under the broiler a bit longer.
  3. On each radicchio steak, place one bruleed grapefruit round. Drizzle with Balsamic and serve immediately.

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