The beautiful color and sweet-tart flavor make pomegranates popular around the holidays when they're at their peak.
Pomegranates are about the size of a small grapefruit. Choose heavy fruits because the heavier the pomegranate, the juicier the fruit. The thin, leathery skin should be smooth, not wrinkled or hard, with few blemishes. While most varieties are red, some varieties may have a pinkish or green skin.
Pomegranates can be kept at room temperature for several weeks and are best eaten at room temperature. For longer storage, store in the fridge for up to two months. The seeds and juice can be frozen separately.
Cut off the "crown", then score the outer layer of skin into sections. In a large bowl of water, break apart the sections along the score lines. Roll out the arils (the sweet juice sacs surrounding a tiny edible seed) with your fingers. The arils will sink to the bottom while the white membrane floats to the top. Put the seeds in a sieve to drain the water. To juice a pomegranate, cut it in half (like you would a grapefruit), and extract the juice using a juicer. Pour juice through a sieve. You'll get about 1/2 cup juice from one pomegranate.
Five Easy Ways to Use Pomegranates
- Toss pomegranate seeds into lettuce or fruit salads.
- Stir seeds into a favorite rice dish.
- Add color to a bowl of oatmeal or dish of yogurt wtih the scarlet-colored seeds.
- Sprinkle a handful of seeds over a cup of yogurt or sherbet.
- Enjoy a glass of pomegranate juice on ice.
Try these pomegranate recipes.