Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Sunshine in a bowl.

When I was in Austin, Nick & Louisa took me out to dinner at Uchi, a beloved Japanese restaurant on South Lamar. Before we began the incredibly delicious meal, our waiter brought us a small amuse: pomelo tossed with olive oil and topped with grey sea salt.

It was, in a word, marvelous. Pomelo is a bit milder than grapefruit and has a lovely sweet, sour and slightly tangy flavor. It's not a juicy citrus; instead, its texture is a bit springy, the pulpy flesh bursting in the mouth rather than dripping on the plate. It's a fruit chock-full of subtle flavors.

On Sunday, by way of a snack, I decided to recreate the amuse here at home. Nothing could be easier, really. You slice off the pomelo's rather thick peel, trim the pith away from the flesh, and toss it in a bit of olive oil. Don't skimp on the salt - use the best, flakiest sea salt you have, and sprinkle a bit more of it than you think you need.

As a snack, a single pomelo serves one. As an amuse, it can serve three to four, depending on how skillfully you peel and de-pith the thing. Either way, it brightens a winter's day like little else can.

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