Welp, remember that time I wished for a blizzard? I’d just like to issue my heartfelt apologies to everyone in Boston and the surrounding areas. I didn’t realize I had so much power. Honestly. So yes, I got my blizzard, plus about 30 more inches of snow. Also, it’s freezing cold and the fact that it’s nearly impossible to get out of the house and do anything is starting to get really old.
I’m going to stop complaining now because I really don’t have it that bad. Yes, I’m cold non-stop and hating the trek through the snow to work, but I also haven’t done a lick of shoveling or snow cleanup. My husband has literally done every bit of snow blowing, shoveling, etc. and I haven’t even offered to help. I am beyond thankful and counting my blessings while I wait for the day he drags me out of bed and tells me to put my boots on and grab a shovel (please don’t do that, honey? I’ll make you a warm meal and cocktail if you just let me stay inside…).
But really, all of this snow has me wanting to spend my life in the kitchen baking. Except the kitchen is too far away from the fireplace. But at least the heat from the oven can keep me warm? And baked goods, too. Is there anything more delightful than a lemon squares? Well, um yes. Actually. I happen to think lime bars are a lot more fun than lemon squares. And I just discovered that there’s even something better than lime squares… Grapefruit Squares. I partnered with Florida Grapefruit to come up with this recipe for a tropical citrus bar that will remind you of summer, but is totally accessible in the dead of winter. Even in a blizzard.
I’ve mentioned it before, but grapefruit is most definitely one of my all-time favorite fruits. I’ve always loved it and could seriously eat 2 grapefruits a day, every day, and be so happy.
Florida grapefruit is the sweetest, juiciest grapefruit in the world, which means it makes me the happiest girl in the world. You may have noticed that it doesn’t necessarily look the prettiest on the outside- that because of the wind and other growing conditions in Florida’s subtropical climate.
But it’s BEAUTIFUL on the inside. Gorgeous.
Florida grapefruit it as its sweetest and juiciest from January-March, which is RIGHT NOW. And definitely one of the things that I love best about winter. I paired the winter fruit with coconut because I’m still craving all things tropical. I wanted to add a little bit of pizazz to the grapefruit coconut squares and I settled on pink peppercorn. Obviously the color was fitting and for some reason, grapefruit and pepper is always a winning combination.
To make the squares, start with the pink peppercorn shortbread crust. Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a medium bowl, use a fork to mix together 1 C flour, 1/3 C brown sugar, crushed pink peppercorns, and 1 stick butter (room temperature). Mix until ingredients are incorporated and butter is the size of peas.
In a parchment paper lined 8×8 baking pan, press dough into the bottom of the pan.
Baked for 20 minutes, until just starting to get golden around edges.
While the crust is baking, prepare the filling.
Squeeze about 3/4 C grapefruit juice into a small bowl. You may be able to get 3/4 C out of one grapefruit or you may need one and a half.
I accidentally squeezed a whole cup, so I got to drink 1/4 cup. Delicious!
In a separate larger bowl, whisk three eggs with 3/4 C sugar, 2 T flour, 1/2 t baking powder, and 1/2 t salt. Stir in the grapefruit juice, zest, and shredded coconut.
When the crust comes out of the oven pour the filling into it.
And pop it back in the oven at 350 degrees for 20-23 more minutes, until the filling is just set.
Let the bars cool. And then dust with powdered sugar and slice.
The perfect combination of winter and tropical beach vacation.
The coconut gave these a bit of a different look than the typical lemon bar. But the consistency was pretty much the same. Which means awesome.
Of course the pink peppercorn was totally different, but in a nice subtle way. A little bit of kick in an otherwise sweet and tart bar.
While I love a good lemon bar or lemon bar, grapefruit bars definitely take the cake. Or the square, so to speak.
And you better believe I ate that half of a grapefruit you see in my pictures immediately after the photo-shoot was complete. I might be on a slight grapefruit overload right now, but I seriously cannot stop. But hey, half a grapefruit has 100% of the recommended daily amount of vitamin C, so I’m OK with that.
In case you haven’t noticed, I’ve been trying my very best to find the happy things in the dark depths of winter. Thank you, Florida grapefruit, for being one of those. Now, excuse me while I go hide under a million blankets and pretend there’s not 30+ inches of snow outside my house right now.
What’s your favorite way to enjoy grapefruit?
Grapefruit Coconut Pink Peppercorn Squares
For the Pink Peppercorn Shortbread Crust
- 1 C flour
- 1/3 C brown sugar
- 1 stick butter room temperature
- 2 t crushed pink peppercorns
For the Grapefruit Coconut Filling
- 3 eggs
- 3/4 C sugar
- 2 T flour
- 1/2 t baking powder
- 1/2 t salt
- 3/4 C freshly squeezed grapefruit juice from 1 or 2 Florida grapefruit
- 1 t grapefruit zest
- 1/2 C shredded coconut
- Powdered sugar
For the crust:
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.
- In a medium bowl, use a fork to mix together flour, brown sugar, crushed pink peppercorns, and butter. Mix until ingredients are incorporated and butter is the size of peas.
- In a parchment paper lined 8x8 baking pan, press dough into the bottom of the pan.
- Baked for 20 minutes, until just starting to get golden around edges.
For the filling:
- In a large bowl whisk eggs with sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir in the grapefruit juice, zest, and shredded coconut.
- Pour the filling into it baked crust.
- And bake at 350 degrees for 20-23 more minutes, until the filling is just set.
- Let the bars cool. And then dust with powdered sugar and slice.
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.