Thursday, February 7, 2008

Good luck fruit for Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year--which starts today and goes for 15 days--has many foods that are meant to be eaten to bring good luck. One of them is the grapefruit-like pummelo (also called pomelo, Chinese grapefruit or shaddock).

A pummelo looks a good deal like a grapefruit (no particular surprise since the grapefruit is a cross between a pummelo and an orange), but has a greener skin and is sometimes pear-shaped. However, the real difference between a grapefruit and a pummelo lies on the inside. The skin of the pummelo is extremely thick and very cottony. And the fruit segments are further protected by tough membranes that need to be removed.

However, once you've done the work, you will be rewarded by the intriguing fruit inside. The segments are filled with sturdy, individual flavor cells that taste something like grapefruit, but sweeter. Your best bet for finding a pummelo this time of year would be in an Asian market, especially if you live anywhere where Chinese New Year is celebrated.

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