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Many of my memories growing up centered around food and family gatherings. We didn’t have a lot of money, but there was my Mom’s love of cooking and nourishing her family. She was the kind of cook who wasn’t afraid to try new things, but also repeated many old family recipes and kept the spirit of the people who gave her those recipes alive in doing so.
One of those recipes was my Grandma Bea’s Grapefruit Avocado salad with a honey poppy dressing from around the 1950’s. Even as a small child, I loved the juicy sweetness of the ruby red grapefruit, with the creamy nutty flavor of the avocado. My Mom would make this salad on special occasions like Christmas and Easter, so I have such fond memories of eating it.
Grapefruits stay in season for quite some time — their peak season being from October to June, so we would eat a half of one almost every day for breakfast. I still carry on this habit. Being from California you’d think I would eat California grapefruit… wrong. I like the California variety, but they do not compare to the juicy sweetness of Texas Sweet Scarletts. That’s right.. “don’t mess with Texas,” especially their grapefruit.
I’m not sure where my Grandmother got the original recipe. She was a huge Julia Child fan, so I like to think she jotted it down after watching one of her shows, but honestly, I have no idea. I had to alter the recipe a bit because it called for sugar in the dressing and, with the already sweet grapefruits, it tasted too sweet to for my liking, plus, who needs all of that added refined white sugar? I like to enhance the already sweet fruit with something more natural, like a drizzle of honey or agave.
I updated Grandma Bea’s recipe by adding a jicama “bruschetta” (a disk of jicama I cut out using a cookie cutter). This way you can serve this vegan salad as an appetizer or snack. I love food that you can pick up with your hands and especially when it’s full of whole, healthy ingredients. The avocado adds healthy fats and grapefruit is loaded with Vitamin C.
I truly believe my Grandmother would approve of my updated version and I hope she’s smiling down on me right now saying, “That’s lovely dear, what a nice job you’ve done,” and “Dear, I’ve never heard of Jicama, is that some California thing?” I can hear her voice in my mind.
I hope you enjoy!
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What You’ll Need
For the salad
1- Sweet Scarlett Ruby Red Grapefruit – peeled, sectioned, and diced.
1- Avocado, peeled and diced
1- Medium sized Jicama Root, peeled and cut into 1/4 inch thick slices
For the dressing
3 Tablespoons of Apple Cider Vinegar
2 Tablespoons of Honey or Agave Syrup
2 tsp. of Dijion Mustard
1 tsp. of Poppy seeds
3 Tablespoons of Olive or Avocado Oil
1/4 tsp. salt
Pepper to taste
How to make it
Take your jicama slices and, using a medium sized round cookie cutter, make disks — around 7-8. Take excess jicama from disks and dice into small pieces. Set aside.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl whisk together all ingredients for the dressing. Add avocado, diced jicama, and grapefruit to the bowl of dressing and toss until fully coated.
Carefully stack the salad onto the jicama disks and serve immediately. You could make this ahead of time and store in the refrigerator for up 24 hours.
So tell me, do you like Texas Ruby Red Grapefruit? Do you have a recipe that you regularly make that was passed down by a family member?