Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Bittersweet Endings

today marks the last day of two classes: ICM (clinical skills) and HSS (global health ethics). it is definitely bittersweet - the classes are fine, but what i'll miss more are the people in them. my ICM class has been tight since the days of our first preceptor, dr. reddick, who i still consider a mentor even though he left us for clear skies and blue waters in wilmington (im not bitter!). we've been seeing each other every week for two years, with potlucks and beach trips in between. one of us is even engaged (yay claire T!). HSS has only been meeting every week of this semester, but its filled with a ton of cool peeps that i don't get to see very often otherwise, so i've been grateful for that. but, all good things must come to an end (did i just call 2nd year a "good thing"?), and as we wrap up this semester and prepare to take our first board exam, i think we all have our eyes set on the next good thing to come: 3rd year clerkships. 

so how do i celebrate the bittersweet end of two classes? with bittersweet cupcakes of course. and for that, i think i'll use a bittersweet fruit.

grapefruit is one of my favorite citruses. my obsession started at a young age when my aunt told me it would boost my metabolism. needless to say, drinking a carton of gf juice in two days probably did more sugary harm than good. grapefruits do have tons of health benefits though, with loads of vitamin C, antioxidants, and tumor inhibitors (careful though - it can interfere with the metabolism of some medications!). for most people, its a love or hate relationship with the ruby red fruit, and the only way you can bring the haters to the other side is to dump sugar on it. sooo... that's kind of what i did.

i really like lemon poppyseed muffins, so i thought grapefruit would be a unique replacement for the yellow citrus. i tried balancing the slight bitterness of the zest with dashes of cinnamon and of course some sugar. these are topped with a citrus glaze, for simplicity of assembly, presentation, and flavors.  they make a nice light dessert, or even a brunch muffin if you like your stuff sweet (i mean, who doesn't? update: this is definitely getting listed under breakfast items on the "recipes" page). if you're not a grapefruit fan, just try it out! you might be pleasantly surprised :) 

grapefruit poppy-seed cupcake
  • 1 box white cake mix
  • 1 tbsp poppyseed
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 3 egg whites (confession: i misread the box and cracked and beat 3 whole eggs... then just poured half of it :)
  • 1 tbsp grapefruit zest
  • 1 1/3 cup fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice (from 1 to 1 1/2 large grapefruit)
  • 2 tbsp oil
mix together the cake mix, poppyseed, and cinnamon. in a separate bowl, beat egg whites. combine zest, juice, and oil with the egg whites, then add to dry mixture and stir till combined. fill paper-lined muffin tin and bake at 350F for 12 min (mini muffins) or 15-18 min (regular muffins). remove and cool  completely on wire rack. 

grapefruit glaze
  • 1 1/2 cup powder sugar
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp grapefruit zest
  • 2-3 tbsp fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice
mix the dry ingredients until well combined. add grapefruit juice slowly, until the desired consistency is reached. you can ladle the glaze onto cupcakes and let them run (so much fun), or you can wait till the glaze has set a bit and use an offset spatula to spread it onto the cupcakes. 

one more has yet to be frosted...

a little bit of glaze went overboard, but somehow, it's just not enough...

so i just put some more :) 

bittersweet :) adios ICM & HSS! 

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