Last time, I told you about the powerful effects offered by the lovely Pomegranate. If you haven’t already seen that post, check it out here.
This time, I want to focus on how to use this wonderful ingredient. Like… if it’s new to you, you might not know how to get past the blushing hard skin to the fruit inside. Turns out, it’s easy if you just turn on a little charm.
How to peel a pomegranate
- The juice stains everything it touches. So wear old clothes or an apron. I didn’t splash a drop, though, so if you’re patient, perhaps it won’t be a problem. Have a glass bowl waiting, to receive the seeds.
- To get started, take a sharp knife and cut off the crown. Gently scoop out some of the center core without disturbing the seeds.
- Slice a thin piece of the hard skin off the bottom.
- Cut just through the outer skin, from the top of the fruit to the bottom. Make three other similar cuts around the fruit, so you can separate it into quarters. To do this, put your thumb in the core center and gently pull apart the sections.
- Peel away the inner white papery pith covering the seeds and discard.
- Turn the skin inside out over your bowl, and the seeds will pop right out. You may have to gently prod some of them with your thumbs and fingers.
- If you have a lot of white pith mixed in with your seeds, fill the bowl with cold water. The pith floats to the top and you can easily spoon it away. Drain the water. I didn’t need to do this.
Juicing the pomegranate seeds
If you want the juice, but not the seeds, you have options:
- Buy a bottle of pure pomegranate juice. Check the label to make sure there are no added ingredients (like the demon sugar).
- Squeeze the seeds of a fresh pomegranate. Here are three ways:
- Cut the fruit in half crosswise and ream the halves as you would a lemon.
- Place the extracted seeds in a sealed plastic freezer bag and crush them gently with a rolling-pin.
- For less bitterness, cook the seeds slowly in a bit of water, and press them through a sieve or cheesecloth.
If you make a mess with pomegranate juice, find out how to clean up, here.
Pomegranate juice is great in drinks. Try these:
- An iced tea with pomegranate, as in my last post
- A wine spritzer: pour a tablespoon or two of pomegranate juice over ice, then top up with white wine and as much (or as little) of soda water as you want
- Pomegranate juice mixed with blueberry or cranberry juice and a little soda over ice
Pomegranate partners well with other healthy P words… like pumpkin seeds, pickled beets, pears, and potassium from dark leafy greens. Try these three main-course salads for lunch. All are super delicious.
Pomegranate and potassium (in spinach) salad
- 1 (10 ounce) bag of baby spinach leaves, rinsed and drained
- 1/4 red onion, sliced very thin
- 1/2 cup walnut pieces, chopped
- 1/2 cup crumbled feta
- seeds from 1 pomegranate
- vinaigrette made with 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar and 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Put the spinach in a salad bowl. Top with red onion, walnuts, and feta.
- Sprinkle pomegranate seeds over the top, and drizzle with vinaigrette. Toss.
Pear and pomegranate with kale salad
Kale can be an acrid fellow. This recipe changes him into an agreeable chap! Follow my method, below, and I think you’ll get to like Kale too. Serves two.
- 3 cups kale, rinsed, with ribs cut out and discarded and the leaves torn in pieces
- 2 tablespoons flavorful oil (I used walnut oil)
- ground sea salt and black pepper, to taste
- 1 pear, halved and cored, then sliced (I used an Asian pear)
- 1/3 cup pomegranate seeds
- 2 tablespoons pomegranate juice
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon prepared Dijon-style mustard
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup or honey (or stevia equivalent)
- Divide the greens between two bowls. Rub 1 tablespoon walnut oil into the kale leaves in each bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Divide the pear slices and pomegranate seeds among the two bowls.
- Combine the pomegranate juice, lemon juice, mustard, and sweetener in a saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat; reduce heat and simmer, stirring frequently, until the dressing thickens slightly, about 2 minutes. Pour the warm dressing over the salads and serve. The boiled dressing is truly worth making an extra pot dirty for. This recipe makes a colorful salad course for a special dinner. It’s that good.
Pomegranate and pickled-beet salad
- 2 bunches of baby rocket
- seeds from 1 pomegranate
- 1 cup pickled beets, shredded
- ½ cup of pumpkin seeds, roasted
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon pepper
- 3 tablespoons pickled beet juice
- 2 tablespoons walnut or macadamia nut oil ( or even olive oil)
- Seed the pomegranate, chop the greens, and grate the beets.
- Mix all the veggies but the pumpkin seeds.
- In a small bowl beat together the mustard, salt, pepper, vinegar, and oil. Taste and add lemon juice if needed. Pour the vinaigrette over the salad and top with seeds.
Pomegranate: Goddess of Love – Learn about pomegranate’s benefits to health. Recipe: Icy pomegranate green tea