Thursday, December 17, 2009

How to Seed a Pomegranate – There Will NOT Be Blood

I was going to repost my famous "Secret Underwater Pomegranate Trick" video, but the video quality was so horrible (it was one of my first how-to videos) I decided to re-shoot it with the new SLR camera. I'm so glad I did! It looks amazing, if I do say so myself.

There is nothing quite like the sweet/tart explosion of a pomegranate kennel, but so many people avoid this great holiday fruit because of the mess associated with liberating the jewel-like seeds. This video should take care of that.

Any winter salad becomes extra special with a scattering of
pomegranate seeds, and they're also a natural for garnishing all kinds of desserts – pomegranate cheesecake anyone? I really hope you give this technique a try. Enjoy!


26 comments:

foofifofum said...

And, did he mention how how good they are for you?

The Culinary Chase said...

Cool! What a neat way to de-seed a pomegranate! Cheers!

Anonymous said...

Funny when you tried to squeeze in Happy Holidays quickly.

PukaDog said...

I absolutely LOVE pomegranates! ... I've actually done your method, and it is indeed the easiest and least messy method. However, I also love the juice that comes out of these marvelous red jewels, so prefer the more difficult method of rolling like a lemon before juicing, cut in half, then wack the outer skin with a wooden spoon over a big bowl to capture as much juice I can. Also use a knife, pickle fork or grapefruit spoon to scoop out the stuborn seeds. No question this a a much more messy method. Bit it's so worth it, imho!

PrimeBrit said...

We used to use a pin or needle to 'pluck' the seeds out and then eat straight from the metal pointy object! I'm not sure how much our parents were watching us when we were young?

B.C. Harvey said...

Chef John,

Long time viewer, long time commenter (mostly on youtubes)

You should definitely add a 'submit to reddit' link amongst your digg, del.icio and stumble links. Reddit is like Digg without the stormfronters, it's really reminiscent of slashdot pre-millenium. Really the web 2.0 site of choice for discriminating web addicts.

As an aside to my comment but back on topic for this blog post I don't mind the membranes and enjoy the challenge of picking through my pomegranates carefully and by hand. I use my pocket knife to break open the top and slowly and carefully mange (en francais manger=to eat, je mange) each kernel. Also isn't it fascinating how closely the pomegranate 'kernels' (good word) resemble the kernels of corn? Corn was a human-selected agricultural product (source: Good Eats) and I now wonder how closely the middle-east native Pomegranate tree is related to the Central American corn plant? Agricultural Anthropologist required.

crystal said...

one way to do it not underwater is by cutting off the top nub like make a circular cut and then make a slit around the entire pomegranate. then gently part it and take out the seeds

Pascal said...

These things are very common in Thailand, and my favorite recipe out from them would be a freshly made juice!

Andrea said...

i love it!! Thanks Chef John

Mother Rimmy said...

I made a salad recently with this wonderful fruit. It was terrific! The juice made a terrific dressing, and the fruit made such a pretty presentation. Great post. Thanks!

Flour said...

Fantastic tip, and title to this post! Thank you!

Broklynite said...

Hm, I never tried it underwater, always just slicing through the middle and cracking it open. Once you've done that, they're easy enough to pick from the fruit.

That said I stumbled on a neat trick a few years ago to reduce the mess. Slice the pomegranite in half. Stick it in the refridgerator overnight, then enjoy. It doesn't work if you just stick it in the fridge, you have to slice it in half first. If you do so, it ends up being much neater and you waste less juice. I could hazard a guess as to why but I don't actually know.

jeff said...

First there was the amazingly awesome little wooden spoon, then runaway viral video hit "How to Eat a Chicken Wing". Now Chef John has given us the tour de force! Thank you Chef John!

Jeff

cooker said...

Pomegranate "Kennel" ? Is that where they put them when they've been naughty ? :-)
Crystal - Thats how the street fruit vendors do it in India.....it is amazing. Will video that & send you Chef John. & in this case ....there really will be no blood.......not even in the first cut........
Sorry, that was the unkindest cut of them all :-)
& speaking of the uses of the Pom....you should try my Pom wine....sparkling, delicious & very very red !!!

wingaling said...

Thank you Chef! I was a pomegranate ignoramus until now! So scared to reach for that mysterious produce.

Birder said...

This is very enlightening, Chef John! I'm still a pomegranite ignoramus, but may not be after I try this. Tell me, can you also eat this membrane, and is there any actual flesh in this fruit that's edible?

This seems like it could be one of those fruits you just eat with wreckless abandon in the bathtub, like a ripe mango.

Chef John said...

no the membrane is bitter like an orange. The kernels are all edible but have tiny seeds inside which most eat, but some spit out.

rideandcook said...

I've never used pomegranates before but after watching this video you've given me an idea for my New Year's Day party menu. Thank you Chef!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this! I have always wanted to try this fruit, but had no idea how to eat it. Can't wait to go get one soon!

LC said...

Hi Chef Jay,

Thank for this tip. Another way to do it is to just break them apart - and then pat on their back while holding them in your hand - seed-side facing your palm - with a spoon.

The seeds will just fall out!

Chef John said...

some seeds come out like that, but not all, and juice splatters all over. i prefer the water.

Basia said...

NO! Am I the only one who got the "insane in the membrane" reference? CJ - I will now worship you!!!! But I feel it should be mutual, at least!

Chef John said...

Done and done. ;-)

Anonymous said...

In some (german-speaking) cultures, the water used to seed the pomegranate is saved and drunk later. You have to have very clean and preferrably hairless hands, which is why only women are allowed to do it in those parts of the world. True story!

philogaia said...

This sounds really good for a practical kitchen extraction of the loveliness that is pomegranate seeds. But clearly you have not sat in a circle of slightly drunk Yule revelers and passed around the rended portions of a sacred pomegranate digging out those precious seeds for yourself and each other. Membranes, challenges...it is just all a part of the magic. ;-) I think you are up for this...

Chef John said...

Sounds great. But, I never said that this method should be used for every occasion! ;)