Fresh Grapefruit Crème Brûlée

We are drowning in grapefruit at the farmhouse!  It is literally life-threatening to stand under that tree right now–you can hear them hitting the ground all day and all night.  So naturally, I’m trying to use them in as many ways as I can….the latest?  Creme brulee.  I am cuckoo for creme brulee, for anyone who is wondering.  No one’s actually wondering, I get that.

Fresh grapefruit crème brûlée from

Essentially, this recipe is a variation on just normal, vanilla creme brulee.


2 eggs

6 egg yolks

1 cup sugar

1/4 cup fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice, pulp strained.  (Our grapefruit is, I think, Oro Blanco, which is a tart, light-yellow fruit, but I am sure that sweet pink grapefruit would work just as well)

Zest of one grapefruit

2 cups heavy cream

1/2 cup granulated sugar for brulee-ing

Start by preheating the oven to 300 degrees.  Fill a large pot with water and get it to a boil on the stove top–once it has boiled, keep it hot, you’ll need this later.

Whisk together the eggs, egg yolks, and 1 cup of sugar until they are light yellow and stiff.

Add the cream, zest, juice and mix gently until well-blended.

Line a baking dish with either a damp dish towel or damp paper towels, and set your ramekins on top of the towel.

Carefully pour the mixture evenly amongst the ramekins.

Now, take your hot water from the stove and even more carefully pour this into the baking dish so that the water comes up about halfway on the ramekins.


Place the baking dish on the center rack in the oven and cook for approximately 50 minutes.  They should be set along the edges, but still wiggly in the center when you take them out.

Remove the ramekins from the water bath and let cool to room temperature, then put them in the refrigerator.

When you are ready to serve, take them out of the fridge, coat in a pretty decent layer of granulated sugar and torch those puppies.  This is kind of a trial and error process–keep the torch moving, but let it hit the sugar long enough that it melts it to a lovely dark brown.  Let cool and then crack in!

Fresh grapefruit crème brûlée from

Note: for presentation, I cut some slivers of grapefruit, coated in sugar, then torched them, as well.



Citrus-Themed Memorial Day BBQ

I’ll start off on a serious note….we are humbled by the men and women who serve and have served in this country’s armed forces, and are infinitely grateful to them for their sacrifices.  Our hearts go out to those that have lost their loved ones, or who are waiting and waiting for them to come home.

Citrus-themed Memorial Day BBQ at

As usual, the physical manifestation of Memorial Day came in the form of cocktails and a garden cook-out at Farmhouse38.  You can judge us if you want, but you know you were doing the same irreverent thing.  Because this was a garden party, I turned to the yard for inspiration.  Currently, our herb beds and grapefruit tree are ripe with offerings, so I incorporated as many of these elements as possible into the recipes and decor.

Citrus-themed Memorial Day BBQ at Farmhouse38.comThe tablescape was comprised of mason jar flower arrangements and mason jar votives surrounded by an assortment of citrus collected from ours and friends’ yards.

Memorial Day bbq at

Each setting got a mason jar of minted ice water (gotta stay hydrated!), as well as a sprig of baby grapefruit in the center of each plate.

Citrus-themed Memorial day BBQ at

I wish I could say the sunflowers came from the garden, but these did not.  If it were later in the season, they probably would have!  The green hydrangea and grape leaves are most definitely homegrown, though.

Citrus-themed Memorial day BBQ at

For small gatherings, such as this one, I get to pick from my assortment of random old chairs to use as seating.  Love this!  Also, I like to bring indoor pillows out to add a little extra comfort and texture.

Citrus-themed Memorial day BBq at

Here’s a pretty decent shot of the hanging crystals and mason jars that are a permanent fixture on the grapefruit tree.  The jars contain battery-operated timer candles that come on at dusk everyday.

Citrus-themed Memorial day BBQ at

The girls arrive, looking for cocktails…heh, heh….see what I did there?

Citrus-themed Memorial Day BBQ at

Eloise considers my decor choices.

Mojito Sparkler cocktail from

Mojito Sparkler with pineapple mint from the garden–YUM!  Find the recipe here.

The Saucy Mutt cocktail from

‘Saucy Mutt’ cocktail….our spin on the ‘Salty Dog’. Find the recipe here.

Citrus-themed Memorial Day  BBQ at

A bowl of harvested citrus, and some aMAHzing lemon cookies.

Citrus-themed Memorial Day BBQ at

This was some gorgeous crudite…thanks, Jill!!!

Citrus-themed Memorial Day BBQ at

It isn’t a party without cheese.  Am I right?!

Fresh grapefruit crème brûlée from

Anyone who knows me can vouch for my sick obsession with crème brûlée.  In honor of our citrus theme, I put a spin on these….grapefruit.  Yes, grapefruit crème brûlée.  This was seriously good, if I do say so myself.  Recipe here.

Memorial Day citrus-themed BBQ at

After the candlelit gorge-fest, the small fries ran off steam before we busted out the sparklers.

Citrus themed Memorial Day BBQ at

Firesticks are purty.

Citrus-themed Memorial Day BBQ at

Sparklerglyphs.  This spells….something….

Citrus-themed Memorial Day BBQ at

It’s all fun and games until someone lights their head on fire.  Just kidding.  Safety first; the kids were sober so they were the ones that got to handle the pyrotechnics.

Coop du Jour, Part Deux

What’s the coop du jour?  It’s the coop of the day.

Sorry.  It doesn’t get old for me.  Twenty points to anyone who calls the movie that’s ripped from.

Anyway, back to the chicken coop.  It is complete (ish)!  I’ve got a few more minor aesthetic adjustments to make, but for my husband’s sake, we’re done.  This was yet another addition to our long list entitled, “Projects We Grossly Underestimated”.  But the girls are happy, and safe, and the thing is not an eyesore, so it’s a win for everybody.  Except my husband, who keeps losing all his free time to these sorts of situations.

The roosting box, complete with privacy curtains.

The ladybirds wander in their private coop garden.

Free-ranging Ladybirds

The chicks are a whole two months old now, and they have settled into their new routine like old professionals.  Man, do these girls go to town on the bugs and the weeds.  The back garden?  The one I refer to as the ‘Weed Garden’?  Not so much anymore.  I’m a bit shocked….and maybe even a little sad.  I kind of liked my weeds.  But apparently, so do the chickens.