My adopted mother made this wonderful Grapefruit Pecan Salad for a fancy dinner one night and everyone loved it. It’s a great accompaniment to a grilled steak.
Helen Reeves Pearson didn’t adopt me, I adopted her. She was a wonderful cook, and a lot of my family’s favorites, I got from her.
During the 1990s, Raspberry Dressing was all the rage and it was on everything. Some brands were worse than others. Luckily, this salad has stood the test of time, and the wonderful people at Girard’s make an excellent raspberry dressing.
Using Fresh Grapefruit
When she made it for us, she complained about not being able to get fresh grapefruit, so she used the ones in the refrigerated fruit section of the supermarket. I have used Del Monte on many occasions and it’s always good. I like having the fruit cups in my refrigerator so I can make this salad any time I want.
If you are going to use fresh grapefruit, it should be a ruby red or other sweet variety of grapefruit. Pink grapefruit and white grapefruit are too sour. Don’t roll a grapefruit because it will break up the cells holding the juice – that’s fine for a lemon or lime you want to juice, but not here. You want to enjoy that pop of juice when you bite into the piece of grapefruit.
To prepare grapefruit, simply cut it in half horizontally across its equator. You can run a knife around the interior edges then cut the individual sections, or you can use the Chef’n Grapefruit Sectioning Tool. I have one and I swear by it. It does a great job of sectioning the fruit without making a mess.
This salad is best with candied pecans. My supermarket, Kroger, has them and I love them for this salad. Candying pecans is pretty simple, though. Make sure you have some parchment paper ready. You can put some butter in a pan, and sugar, and the pecans and stir them until the sugar has melted into the butter and started to coat the pecans. Pour the pecans on the parchment paper and quickly separate them with a fork.
- 1 head Lettuce, Butter or Romaine preferred
- 1 grapefruit, ruby red, sectioned
- 1/4 cup pecans, candied
- 1/4 cup Raspberry Dressing
- Break the lettuce up into a nice serving bowl.
- Add the grapefruit and pecans.
- Dress with raspberry salad dressing and lightly toss.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!