If December is about eating, and January is about failed dieting, then February is all about “try try again-ing.” But let’s be honest. Swimsuit season is still far away enough to ignore. So when it comes to eating right and exercising more, let’s pledge to do better, but not our very best. We’ll do our level best come March. Promise.
For February, lets try some Old School dieting. “Slimming” or “reducing” as our Grandmothers called it. You know, open-faced-patty-melts-with-cottage-cheese-and-cling-peaches-in-syrup type of thing. Seriously. That was my grandmother Katie’s weekly diet plate order at the Star Market lunch counter. Another grandmother of mine (I had four altogether) migrated to Florida every winter, in a packed to the gills Cadillac, driving down Interstate 95 in a parade with all the other retired New Yorkers. Her name was Wetona. Or “Toni” for short. I’m gonna go out on a limb here (which I can because I have no surviving grandparents) and say that Toni had the most fun of all my grandmothers. She was in the Womens’ Navy Corps during World War II. She wore bright red lipstick and drawn on eyebrows. She was an early adopter of those blue things you put in your toilet tank to turn the flush water aqua. Toni liked her flowers plastic, and she liked ’em better if they had glitter on ’em too.
Toni and my grandfather, Rodger, would send us a box of mixed citrus every winter. I was a weird kid. I loved getting a box of fruit. Even weirder, my favorite things in the box were the grapefruit. The more sour-sweet, the better. Florida grapefruit are at their peak ripeness in February, and even though Toni and Rodger are no longer with us, I still send myself a box of Florida citrus every year via the internet.
While I usually eat my grapefruit plain, I do occasionally like to eat it fancy. Topped with a little brown sugar, cinnamon, a splash of Cointreau (fancy, huh?) and garnished with a bright red maraschino cherry in Toni’s memory. With a side of black coffee, and maybe some dry toast, it’s a 1950’s Dieter’s Delite breakfast.
What “diet foods” do you remember from your youth? Let us know in the comment section below.
SummaryBroiled Grapefruit with Brown Sugar, Cinnamon & Cointreau
Prep time: 4 Min
Cook time: 7 Min
Total time: 11 Min
2 Tablespoons brown sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons Cointreau or other orange flavored liqueur
Slice grapefruit across the middle and section with a grapefruit sectioning knife. Place both halves cut side up in broil proof dish. Sprinkle brown sugar, cinnamon & Cointreau over both halves. (Halve amount of each if only broiling one half.)
Place grapefruit halves approximately four inches below broiler. Begin checking after 4 minutes has passed. Once sugar has melted and browned in spots, remove, allow to cool, top with maraschino cherry, and serve.