Sometimes Life Hands You Mystery Citrus.

Remember how I said all of our friends brought pretty much everything we needed for Pat’s Birthday Party?
We ended up with quite a bit of leftovers when it was all said and done, from a dozen eggs from the Royston chickens, to a package of sausage from Miss Piggy, to a case of assorted beers as well as some citrus that Eric had brought back from his recent trip to Florida.  He mentioned something about lemons in the mix, but honestly, most of the fruit appeared to be the same size and turned out to be some of the tastiest, if smallest grapefruit we’ve ever had.  There were a few pieces of fruit that had damaged skin and we couldn’t quite tell what it was.  It was the same size as the grapefruit, so we really sort of assumed that they were grapefruit as well.  
The other day, while on Tastespotting (which is my absolute favorite food porn/time suck these days), I saw this link for a grapefruit olive oil cake.  It was described as more of a ‘breakfast cake’ than a dessert cake.  Which actually sounded quite do-able, since I swore up and down I was not baking a cake the entire month of February.  But, my family does need to eat breakfast and while some of us are quite content to eat things like oatmeal and raisin bran and homemade granola with yogurt day after day, others are not.   As this member of our household loves carbs as part of her breakfast, I thought this might be a nice treat.  Reading the recipe, I saw it was made with whole wheat flour, eggs and olive oil, so really, it did look fairly healthy.  I decided to skip the glaze, as that was just added sugar and I do keep an eye on how much sugar we consume, even if I have a wicked sweet tooth and serve things like cake for breakfast.  Everything in moderation, including moderation.
I thought it would be great to try this recipe out while I had such amazing grapefruit.  Certainly this would turn out fabulously and then I would be applauded for such a wonderful breakfast treat.  The recipe called for grating the rind, but as the exterior was so damaged, I sort of skipped that part, which I do realize was probably a crucial step to the flavor and while I do know better, you wouldn’t have wanted that zest either.  I cut them open to juice them and THAT’S when I realized they were a lemon, and not a grapefruit. 
I was undeterred however in my quest for cake.  So I pressed on, thinking it was now a full blown experiment and what was the worst that would happen?  A lemon cake instead of a grapefruit cake?  They’ll still eat it, because they eat just about everything I attempt to cook and if they don’t like it, then we’ll feed it to the squirrels, who love everything we give them. 
I am sad to say the cake was slightly overbaked, despite the fact that it didn’t cook for the full 50 minutes called for in the recipe. You know how you can smell a cake starting to burn? That happened, so I pulled it out early and while it wasn’t burnt, it was definitely starting to crisp on the edges. When we cut into, I found it was indeed, dry, but not too crumbly. Flavorwise, I found it sort of meh at first, but this morning, dipped in coffee, it was just right.  Breakfast cake indeed.  Although clearly, grating the rind and combining it with the sugar is key to more flavor in this cake.
Oh, and my main reason for a baking break, that whole muffin top thing?  I am quite pleased to say that a little over a week without cake combined with some serious workouts made a visible difference in that muffin over the top of my pants.  Yes, I do realize that for a woman past 40 this is an incredible gift of genetics and that noting it here probably just helped to shorten that window of time I have left to pull this sort of thing off.  I am no where near bathing suit ready, but at least I can still fit into my pants without looking unfortunate.  I can only imagine how fantastic I’d look if I would work out like that and forgo cake all the time.  But then, everything in moderation, including moderation.

2 thoughts on “Sometimes Life Hands You Mystery Citrus.

  1. SuziCate says:

    I didn't know there was such a thing as grapefruit zest! My dog loves grapefruit…she goes crazy every time I eat one, and that is one of the things I dislike sharing.
    I often alter recipes; sometimes they're winners and sometimes we have to throw them out!

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