Greenies Like Us: Glean To Clean

Okay, so, you all know that we like free stuff. Love. We love free stuff. That’s why gleaning came so naturally to us. Free food, what could be better? And we happen to have family members that will take the time to tell us where to get free stuff. And this time the sister-in-law was looking out for us. Her neighbor has two different kinds of grapefruit that were ripe and ready for picking. Bam! There you go. Mo’ free stuff. Love, love, love.

And here are the beauties. Two different kinds and I couldn’t tell you what kind so I won’t even guess. One has a typical pinkish color to it (inside and out) and the other is bright yellow, as yellow as a lemon and only slightly bigger than an orange. Very cool. I think I’ll do a bit of research to see if I can find a good variety to plant in our own yard, because we love grapefruit around here. It’s one of those forgotten fruits that doesn’t get enough exposure if you ask me.

This is one of the pinks. Not bad, though the sections are very small it’s still quite delicious and worth the work. The yellow variety is juicier and has bigger sections. (I gotta figure out what they are!) So eating them isn’t hard to do, but what do you do with two whole bags of grapefruit before it goes bad? Thatsa lotta fruit to eat in a short period of time, ya think?

Yeah, I know. A marmalade is always nice. That’s a given but complicated and time consuming. I want to try something brand new to do with them. And I think I found it. Over at Crunchy Betty, I found the coolest thing to make with the peel of the grapefruit: Scouring powder. Great right? Then we’ll do a refreshing iced tea with the rest later. So first, peel several grapefruits and lay them out to dry. I didn’t bother with the dehydrator, just stuck them on a plate and waited.

I used the yellow fruits and to my surprise, the peelings turned very dark! I went back each day and tossed them around so they’d dry evenly and it took about 5 days sitting out like this before they were dry enough to grind. But technically, I didn’t start this recipe for another 3 days because I was out of borax.

It was very easy to grind and the smell is amazing! It instantly filled the entire house with a lemony-fresh scent. (Is that because of the variety? Is it a lemon-grapefruit hybrid of sorts?) And now for the recipe:

Scouring Scrub

1/4 cup powdered grapefruit peels
1/4 cup borax
1/3 cup baking soda

I ended up with more ground peels than the original recipe so I adjusted it accordingly.

Throw it all into the container of your choice. I like to use a recycled jar (from the days of buying spaghetti sauce, tsk tsk) and a recycled Parmesan cheese lid for dried herbs and what not, and it also works great for a concoction like this one. Now let’s put it to the test.

The bathroom we’re using in the house (we’ve only been using one for now) has an old(er) tub in it. Since I hate to use a lot of bleach I use my homemade lemon cleaner on it. Remember, we’re using our own septic system and the leach field is right outside the front door! So the old, stained fixtures have continued to look, well… old and stained. So I’m quite curious to see how this scrub will work out.

Again, the smell is FAB! If anything, it’s worth the smell it leaves behind. Soooo clean and fresh smelling, and way better than store-bought scrubs.

After scrubbing it, I let it sit for about 10 minutes. And… well…

…uh, okay. So it doesn’t really look different in this picture. But in person, I can see a difference, really! I think after using this for a while, it will become noticeably whiter. I’ll post an update to let you know if I’m right or not.

After all is said and done, I think I’ll keep making this scrub. I really do like it a lot. On a newer fixture I’m sure it’ll do wonders. So now, the rest of the grapefruit will be a challenge to use up. The fruit that I peeled for this scrub was made into a pitcher of juice/tea mix. You boil a cup or two of water and shut it off, add 4-5 tea bags and let it steep for a good half hour, pour it into a 1/2 gallon pitcher, add enough water to fill the pitcher halfway, then fill it the rest of the way with a complimentary juice and sweeten to taste. Serve it on ice. This grapefruit juice was mixed with Acai berry green tea and was as good as it sounds. Yum.

So of course, the rest of the fruit we picked can be turned into a marmalade. I know, I know. I’ll get to it. 🙂