FOODIE COOKING TIP
Shared by Winemaker Gabrielle O’Connell
THE POMEGRANATE DE-SEEDING CHALLENGE
When the pursuit of health collides with a stubborn fruit
As founder of O’Connell Family Wine Country Foodie, an important part of O’Connell Family wines, I am focused that our quality of daily living celebrates our love of wine and food, with an emphasis on well-being. Organic practices in our Vineyard Garden, in the O’Connell Family Estate Vineyard and the certified organic GC Napa Valley kitchen, that produces our Culinary Products, is not only a priority but a passion.
Our pomegranate trees accent the O’Connell Family Estate Vineyard Garden with extravagant red fruit that look like Christmas ornaments every fall. That is very appropriate as I love to use pomegranates with fresh greenery to create a vineyard garden to table center piece for Thanksgiving dinner and to naturally decorate the fireplace mantel with pomegranates, apples and aromatic evergreens that grow next to the O’Connell Family Vineyard. After being a decorative attraction, the pomegranates are repurposed to use in Wine Country Foodie salad recipes all year long by removing their seeds (arils) and freezing them.
O’Connell Family Wine Country Foodie seasonal recipes in the fall often use pomegranate seeds, as they are delicious and an acclaimed superior health food. But, getting those little seeds from this beautiful red fruit, can be frustrating. Frustrating because pomegranate seeds love to stick to the outer skin of the pomegranate, as well as squirt out over the cutting surface, your hands and clothes. That can be discouraging, but our Wine Country Foodie Technique shows you how to overcome these challenges.
- Buy a pomegranate deseeding device! It is easily available on-line and is inexpensive. Well worth the money to save time and hassle. Deseed a pomegranate in about one minute. (I use Seed Out available at Amazon and Walmart for around $8.00)
- Enhance recipes with pomegranate seeds
- Add to smoothies, breakfast oatmeal, yogurt parfait
- Add a colorful accent on a log of goat cheese and sprinkled on a charcuterie platter
- Add to salads: Try Decanter Society Foodie Grilled Crunchy Romaine Salad with Cocoa Dusted Pistachios
Let’s get started: Deseed a Pomegranate
Step #1: Collect your equipment to the remove the pomegranate seeds:
- A non-slippery, easy to wash cutting board preferably with a Polypropylene cutting surface. Wood is not a good choice because the pomegranate will stain your wood chopping board.
- An apron
- 1 small bowl or plate approximately 8” in diameter
- 1 medium bowl to hold seeds
- 1 medium bowl to discard the pomegranate skin and membranes.
- 1 small food grade food storage baggy per pomegranate
- 1 heavy cooking spoon
- 1 deseeder (I use Seed Out available at Amazon and Walmart)
Step #2 De-seed Using the de-seeder
- Wash and dry the pomegranate.
- Cut the pomegranate in half though the middle and cut down 2” into the skin every 2 “ around the edge.
- Put deseeder over a bowl or large plate and place pomegranate cut side upon the de-seeder. Lay a paper towel over the pomegranate and tap top of fruit hard with the cooking spoon. The seeds will drop onto the bowl/plate.
- When both sides of the pomegranate are deseeded, lift deseeder and remove any membranes from the seeds. Put seeds into a bowl.
No Deseeder: The Internet has multiple sites describing ways to extract pomegranate seeds.
Step #3 Storing the pomegranate seeds
Fill foodie grade baggie with seeds not immediately used in a Wine Country Foodie recipe or to accent other foods. Store in refrigerator for a week, or store in the freezer for up to a year.
Optional Step #4 Juicing the seeds
Using your favorite juicer, follow instructions to juice the pomegranate seeds to consume immediately. Also mix with other fruit juice such as orange juice (you may want to dilute with water to taste) or freeze in baggies.
Support health for well-being
Many articles on the tremendous health benefits of Pomegranates. A comprehensive one is: 12 Proven Benefits of Pomegranate, which states that “pomegranates have wide-ranging benefits and may help reduce your risk of various serious illnesses, including heart disease, cancer, arthritis and other inflammatory conditions. What’s more, they may boost your memory and exercise performance. If you want to reap the many health benefits pomegranates have to offer, either eat the seeds (arils) directly or drink the juice.
O’Connell Family Wines + Pomegranates
Pomegranates are high in acid, therefore not a great match for red wine such as our boutique O’Connell Family Cabernet Sauvignons. Instead, pair with Sauvignon Blanc. I love adding a tablespoon pomegranate seeds over goat cheese or a soft farmer’s cheese paired with Pietro Family Cellars Sauvignon Blanc, Napa Valley.
MAKE COOKING A JOY AND EATING A CELEBRATION
Join our Decanter Society Foodie Subscription today to easily enjoy a Vineyard to Plate Lifestyle
- Original Decanter Society Foodie recipes to simply elevate at-home meals
- Napa Valley grown and made GC Napa Valley Culinary artisan products sourced from certified organic O’Connell Family Vineyard Gardens, freshly hand-crafted in our certified organic Napa kitchen.
- Perfectly paired O’Connell Family wines
Enjoy your flavor packed freshly-made O’Connell Family Decanter Society Foodie dish, prepared with love.
It’s all about the ingredients