Coconut Grapefruit Brunch Bread

Grapefruit Coconut Bread Pudding 004 Edited Coconut Grapefruit Brunch Bread

Baked grapefruit? I was skeptical, yet I did not let that stop me. And I am quite pleased to report I loved this breakfast. Or desert. Which I ate for breakfast.

While most of the blogs I enjoy reading have switched to a theme of vegetable recipes to cure their readers’ holiday hangovers and assumed weight gain, I continue to eat dessert for breakfast three days in to January. Despite my still-tight pants, it is wonderful. I am calling this my acceptance (as opposed to desiring change) phase.

In addition to baking citrus, grapefruit and coconut did not strike me as all that stellar of a pair. According to The Flavor Bible, which I now own (whoop whoop!), the two can go together, but it is a third-tier pairing at best. This is opposed to sugar which is the most acceptable complement to grapefruit. (Really authors, sugar is the only top flavor pairing you could come up with for grapefruit?) Fortunately for me, who could happily eat grapefruit every day, other desirable flavors like ginger and Champagne also go very well with the fruit.

The tart grapefruit flavor and sweet coconut complement each other very well in this dish, and the nutmeg adds just enough something to keep it interesting. In case you are wondering, nutmeg doesn’t even make the grapefruit list, but it is listed a third-tier flavor pairing for coconut.

Grapefruit Coconut Bread Pudding 019 Edited Coconut Grapefruit Brunch Bread

All this talk of flavors will likely make my sister groan in despair as she reads this. When I opened the Christmas gift that turned out to be my new book, her comment was something along the lines of “oh great, now we’ll probably be reading about that.” Yes. Yes you will.

For all intents and purposes, this dish is a bread pudding. I simply like the panache the name Brunch Bread lends to the recipe. An egg-soaked bread casserole, loaded with cheese and ham, is well known to me, and this is simply its sweet counterpart loaded with grapefruit and coconut flavor.

Because the bread needs time to soak up the delicious coconut milk, this dish is not something to pull together for a quick brunch. On the other hand, it is easily prepared with dinner the night before and popped into the oven to bake the following morning. While you wait you can sip on another grapefruit brunch winner, the Grapefruit Slush. Enjoy!

Grapefruit Coconut Bread Pudding 018 Edited Coconut Grapefruit Brunch Bread

Coconut Grapefruit Brunch Bread
  • For the Brunch Bread
  • 3 cups Italian or French bread, cut into ½ inch cubes
  • 1½ cups pink grapefruit sections, well-drained
  • 1, 13.5 oz can coconut or light coconut milk
  • ¼ tablespoon brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon coconut extract
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • For the Topping
  • 2 tablespoons shredded, sweetened coconut
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 teaspoons flour
  1. Layer the bread cubes in an 8 x 8 baking dish coated with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Prepare the grapefruit by removing all pith and membranes. Layer the fruit on top of the bread.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the coconut milk, brown sugar, eggs, coconut extract, nutmeg and salt.
  4. Gently pour the mixture over the grapefruit and bread.
  5. Cover and refrigerate overnight or for at least eight hours.
  6. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Bake for 30 minutes, covering with foil if the top becomes too brown.
  7. While the brunch bread bakes, prepare the topping by combining the remaining ingredients.
  8. Rub the butter into the topping until it looks like small pebbles.
  9. After the initial 30 minutes of baking, sprinkle the topping over the brunch bread and return to the oven for an additional 20-30 minutes. Again, cover the dish with foil if the top becomes too brown. When done, all liquid will have been absorbed and the bread pudding will appear firm (not jiggly).
  10. Allow the hot dish to sit for 10 minutes before serving warm, or serve at room temperature.
It is very important to take the time to remove the grapefruit sections from its membranes. This is typically very easy to do and will avoid a tough, chewy bite of fruit. To keep your fingers from going numb when peeling, use a grapefruit at room temperature (as opposed to one sitting in the refrigerator). It is also important to allow the grapefruit to drain before layering it over the bread. I simply set my peeled fruit in a collander for a while, but I see no reason allowing the fruit to sit on a paper towel would not work as well.


Happy New Year’s Eve Cocktail: Sparkling Rosemary Grapefruit Soda

Christmas 026 Edited Happy New Years Eve Cocktail: Sparkling Rosemary Grapefruit Soda

Happy New Year’s Eve! After a wonderful week that included visiting with family and friends, I have begun to look forward to the new year. Déjà vu? It is by complete coincidence that I chose to post a grapefruit-inspired drink on both last New Year’s Eve and this one.

I have wanted to make this drink for some time. The two times per year my girlfriends and I get it together enough to make it to brunch, we typically find ourselves at a restaurant that serves a very similar – if not the same – drink. It is delicious, refreshing and the perfect use for winter citrus. As suggested in the original recipe, the rosemary-infused simple syrup is also a great sweetener for lemonade.

Speaking of lemons, this Rosemary Gin Fizz Cocktail is another delicious drink that also makes use of rosemary. I drank a couple of those on Christmas day and found them lovely. I then made these Rosemary Grapefruit Sodas the day after Christmas. Given that I am just now posting them, I have resolved to be more attentive to my teeny tiny blog in the New Year.

Christmas 033 Edited Copy Happy New Years Eve Cocktail: Sparkling Rosemary Grapefruit Soda

Last year, I wrote my resolutions were to practice yoga on a more regular basis as well as to make a galette, Charlotte and Baked Alaska. I succeeded at the yoga and the galette. I did not even try the Charlotte and Baked Alaska, and perhaps more surprising to myself, I did not care. Preferences change, and I decided I simply was not in the mood. Maybe I will get around to those desserts this year and maybe I will not. Either way, I’m sure it will be fine.

I have decided I really do not see a problem with making resolutions any time during the year. My goal on Memorial Day was to finish the five published Game of Thrones books by Christmas. I have been reading (which in this case means looking at  the book on my dresser) A Dance with Dragons since September. In my defense, I have read Gone GirlWhere We Belong, and A Casual Vacancy in the meantime, all of which I thoroughly enjoyed.

Christmas 030 Edited Happy New Years Eve Cocktail: Sparkling Rosemary Grapefruit Soda

Tonight, I have been invited to a party. I would prefer to stay at home and relax on the couch with a book (see above), but I decided to kick-start achieving my resolutions by getting out of my comfort zone. If you find yourself in need of a little resolution inspiration, I found the lists 32 Things You Should Stop Caring About and 25 Things You Need to Forget About rather enlightening.

This year, I struggled to choose my resolutions. At what point do resolutions cross the line into a plain ol’ to do list? The best I can come up with is to start rinsing with mouthwash. I brush and floss, so that next step seems logical.

I am also going to try to meditate, which for me simply means pausing for 15 minutes out of the 16 hours I typically spend awake. This means I must stop for just one of 64 of my 15-minute waking increments. This sounds achievable, yet I have been working on taking just these few minutes for myself  since July. I always tell myself that I will start tomorrow. This time, tomorrow literally is tomorrow. Right after I make cupcakes. Enjoy!

Christmas 040 Edited Happy New Years Eve Cocktail: Sparkling Rosemary Grapefruit Soda

Happy New Year’s Eve Cocktail: Sparkling Rosemary Grapefruit Soda
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup rosemary, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup grapefruit juice (about two grapefruits)
  • 5 cups club soda or plain sparkling water
  • Ice, for serving
  • Rosemary sprigs, for garnishing
  1. Combine the plain water, granulated sugar and rosemary in a saucepan over high heat.
  2. Stir occasionally until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is hot to the touch, about three to five minutes.
  3. Remove the syrup from the heat and allow it to sit for at least 30 minutes. This will allow the rosemary flavor to infuse throughout the syrup.
  4. When the time has passed, use a mesh strainer (or colander in a pinch) to strain the syrup into a pitcher. Discard the strained rosemary.
  5. Add the grapefruit juice and stir to combine.
  6. Immediately before serving, add the club soda or sparkling water and again stir to combine.
  7. Serve over ice and garnish each glass with sprig of rosemary.