How to flesh a grapefruit

Grapefruit is tasty, but the white pith bits can make it a bit bitter, so for using it in salads or desserts, it’s often better to take just the flesh. This takes a little work but can be done quickly with practice.

Start by slicing off the top and bottom of the fruit. Cut just deep enough that you can see a clear round of flesh that is free of pith on each side.

Place the fruit with one of the cut sides down on your cutting board and with the knife just inside the border of the fleshy part and parallel to the surface of the peel, cut off a piece of the peel from one pole to the other, curving the knife to stay parallel to the peel, but below it.

Turn the fruit and continue this procedure until the side peel has all been removed. Err on the side of removing a little flesh, rather than leaving a little pith. The pith tastes very bitter, and makes the next step much harder.

Now cut into one slice, just next to the membrane, and spread the fruit open.

Now begins the delicate part.

There are two ways to remove the first side of the membrane. One is to gently pull from the outside edge and try to peel it back towards the core.

The other is to begin at the core and try to peel out towards the edge. Both can work, it just depends on which edge of the membrane comes away more easily on any given section.

To remove the section from the other side of the membrane (and the rest of the fruit) it is easiest to apply light, even pressure with your thumbs in a movement akin to opening a book. The weakest part of the fruit should be the connection between the section you’re working on, and it’s membrane. The segment should pull away. Repeat this procedure until you are left with the lovely pile of grapefruit flesh you see below.

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4 Comments

Filed under Cookbook

4 responses to “How to flesh a grapefruit

  1. Pingback: Rice noodle salad with grapefruit, watercress, and cashews « Superspark


  2. A video that explains this quite well.

  3. Jean

    Thanks so much for an excellent tutorial!

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