Grapefruit and sumac salad

grapefruit salad

My iPhone  Samsung Galaxy Note, whom never lies, tells me today is going to be a nice sunny day. The tepid 24oC it promised, seems as good as an excuse as any other to together this lovely salad. It almost feels a bit too summery for the end of April, even. But when the sun is out you have to enjoy it while it is there. If it goes again, God only knows when it will be back. And, apparently, grapefruits are in season…

Pink grapefruit and sumac salad  (adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi’s column in The Guardian)


  • 5 pink or red grapefruits for the salad
  • 300mL of grapefruit juice (a big one is suffice).
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • 1 small dried red chilli
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1½ tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon sumac
  • ½ red onion, peeled and very thinly sliced
  • 2-3 small red chicory, separated, and large leaves cut in half on an angle
  • 80g lamb’s lettuce (Valerianella locusta)
  • Salt


Top and tail five grapefruits so they’ll stand on a board. Cut down the side of each grapefruit, following its natural lines, to remove the skin and white pith. Over a bowl to catch the juices, cut in between the membranes to separate the individual segments. Dry the segments on kitchen paper and squeeze any juice from the skin and membranes into a saucepan.

Squeeze enough juice from the last grapefruit to make the juice in the pan up to 300ml. Add the sugar and chilli, bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer until the sauce thickens and you have about five tablespoons-worth of juice left – this could take up to 20 minutes. Set aside to cool down, then whisk in the oil, lemon juice, sumac and a quarter-teaspoon of salt.

In a large bowl, put the grapefruit segments, onion, chicory, watercress and basil. Pour over three-quarters of the dressing and toss gently. (If it seems dry, add all the dressing; otherwise, save it in the fridge for another leafy salad.) Serve at once.

2 Comments on “Grapefruit and sumac salad”

  1. Darya says:

    Lovely recipe!

  2. Herbert Fint says:

    Indeed – the red chicory really does make a difference but is not always easy to obtain.

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