History has accorded the brilliant, intricately-constructed pomegranate just about everything from joy and luck to serious religious significance over the years. This has brought it great praise in history, the arts, plenty of literary symbolism and now it’s hot in nutrition circles. Sometimes referred to as the Chinese apple, some scholars believe the apple Adam and Eve shared was really a pomegranate. Its brilliant color made it useful in creating leather dyes over the years.
It’s largest drawback is the pomegranate is difficult to eat. This autumn treasure is actually a tough-skinned casing for scores and scores of bright juice laden tiny segments called arils. Biting into it as one would another type apple is not recommended. Its juice can stain clothing and work surfaces. Below is a video on how to enter and enjoy the magnificent pomegranate.
Native to Iran, the cultivated pomegranate is ancient. It’s popularity spread over time to Asia, the Mediterranean, Europe, Middle East and Africa. The bright fruit was introduced into Latin America and the U.S. in 1769 by Spanish settlers.
Pomegranates have achieved superfood status in this century by being rich in highly sought-after antioxidants and tannins. High in vitamin C, the vitamin Bs, copper and potassium, they are a great source of fiber, low in calories and fat, cholesterol-free. Take a look at The Produce Picker’s video titled, How to Cut open a Pomegrtanate.
Find pomegranates in sophisticated supermarkets, and a select ones which are blemish-free, firm and heavy for their weight. Newly available dried pomegranate avrils are appearing in cereals, trail mixes and other such foods.
Use pomegranate juice as you would use any tart, colorful juice. Here are a few suggestions:
Accent for fish and meat
Bright pink frostings
Cakes and puddings
Jelly, syrups and relishes
Plain as a snack
Stuffings and chutneys
Pomegranates.org is a great site for this bright fruit, and it has great pomegranate recipes.