Friday, February 11, 2022

Optimal Consumption of Citrus

I eat a pomelo like an orange, dividing it into sections. My daughter eats a pomelo like a grapefruit, cutting it in half at the equator and scooping half sections out with a serrated spoon. Recently I have been trying to eat grapefruit like oranges too — it's messier that way, but I end up with more of the fruit inside me instead of remaining with the peel. Nobody I know, not even my daughter, eats oranges like grapefruit, but that may only be because they are usually too small — you could do it with a very big orange.

Any opinions on what approach to each fruit is optimal?


Sevesteen said...

Pomelo is a beta of citrus. I prefer later revisions where they added flavor :)

How do you eat oranges? I often peel and eat grapefruit, since I eat enough fruit that a grapefruit is a single serving and I usually get loose skinned grapefruit that are reasonable to peel. Oranges get peeled or sliced into wedges depending on how hard they are to peel. I don't think I've ever tried cutting grapefruit into wedges.

Rebecca J said...

In recent years I have also switched to eating grapefruits like oranges, though with some differences - I peel them, then, one segment at a time, I rip open the "skin" and eat just the pulpy part inside. Then I move on to the next segment. It's a horrible mess, which is why I usually have a wet kitchen towel sitting by me, so I can wipe my hands off occasionally.

Oranges - I cut and peel off the skin, and then divide it into quarters or so, and then eat one segment at a time.

Pomelos - I haven't seen them since we left California, but I think I would do them like grapefruits. I remember finding pomelo skin candied and thinking that was pretty wonderful.

William H. Stoddard said...

I can't eat oranges any more; my digestion is too sensitive to acidity. But my approach used to be to remove all of the peel and then break out one section at a time. This seems to be a third method, and one that you don't mention considering. Can pomelos be peeled like this?

Anonymous said...

I had to google "Pomelo" because in my native language (Afrikaans) a 'pomelo' is a grapefruit. You are spoilt for choice in the US!
As a general rule, I prefer a complete de-skin of the fruit (a'la orange). Using a spoon seems inefficient.

naivetheorist said...

what is optimal depends on what your goal iseg., are you trying to consume as much as possible and is neatness a side constraint on reaching that goal?

David Friedman said...

@Rebecca J:

My Rebecca candies citrus peel and agrees with you about pomelo peel. I currently eat grapefruit as you describe, occasionally giving up on getting the skin off a section and eating the whole section.


Citron is the beta of citrus. Pomelo's taste good — you must have been unfortunate in the ones you got.


Yes. I usually quarter oranges and eat a quarter at a time, aside from the peel, but sometimes by sections.

@ Anonymous:

The grapefruit is actually a hybrid of pomelo and orange.


My goal is to maximize my utility. Amount consumed and neatness are both desiderata. Neatness cannot be a side constraint because it is a continuous not binary variable.

Adam Ruth said...

Serrated spoon? We had special grapefruit knives when I was a child, slightly bent and serrated on both sides with a rounded tip. Now I’m dating myself (who else would)?

But it’s all meaningless in the face of grapefruit juice. The gods’ nectar, ču ne?