11/04/2011 09:20 am ET | Updated Aug 31, 2012

How To Cut A Grapefruit

It's easy to cut grapefruit sections using what you already have in your kitchen, explains chef Scott Swartz of The Culinary Institute of America. The first step is to cut off a small slice from both ends to prevent the grapefruit from rolling around on the work surface. Cut the grapefruit in half with a chef's knife. Then use a paring knife to scrape out any seeds. Using the paring knife, cut along the skin of the grapefruit, then cut out each section along the membrane. Now your grapefruit can be eaten with a regular spoon, or you can scoop out the segments to use in fruit salad.

For 60 years, The Culinary Institute of America has been setting the standard for excellence in professional culinary education. In this video series, experienced chefs and educators show you how to tackle essential cooking techniques.

Video Transcript

Hi, I'm Chef Scott Swartz from the Culinary Institute of America, and I'm going to show you this kitchen basic: how to cut a grapefruit.

Today we're going to prepare a grapefruit. This is probably the simplest method, and probably the easiest to eat.

We'll take our chef's knife and we'll cut off a little bit of the bottom and a little bit of the top. This is really just so it doesn't roll around on the table, that's the only real purpose of this - it's not about the eating. Then we'll cut it in half. My first cuts up to this point are all with my chef's knife, because it's going to be much easier. But for sectioning it, I'm going to switch to my paring knife.

First I'll remove any seeds, because we don't want to have to fight and eat the seeds later. Then I'm going to cut along the skin of the grapefruit and then we'll cut down along the membranes, creating each section. What this is going to do is make it much easier to scoop it out and not have to fight with it. This is also a very nice technique so you don't have to run out and buy grapefruit spoons. With the other half of the grapefruit we're going to proceed the same way: go out along the skin, and follow in along the membrane.

This is also a great technique if you want to make a fruit salad and have just the centers of the grapefruit. You can see when you're serving this, it's very easy to scoop the segment right out.