You may remember that a few weeks ago I crossed off a bunch of resolutions and discovered that I had 25 jars of pomegranate juice in the abyss of my freezer. While we don’t have our own (producing) pomegranate trees, they are one of those produce items I can always seem to round up if I need them. They are like the lemons, albeit harder to come by and much more expensive if you have to buy, but if you put it out there, they will come. Some get eaten fresh, but most get juiced. Check out this post from 2012 on my juicing process.
2015 was the first year in many that I did not concoct up pomegranate source, but I didn’t need one, since I had some much juice frozen from the past 2 years. The reason I had so much juice, in addition to all these artisan cocktails I think I’m going to but never make, was to make pomegranate molasses.
Like the preserved lemons I make, pomegranate molasses is staple condiment in my kitchen. I make a batch once a year or so, then I use it to add all kinds of deliciousness to my meals. The taste of pomegranate molasses is a bit hard to explain: basically, its reduced pomegranate juice, so its the same flavor but more concentrated. It is tangy and sweet and you have to taste its amazingness to really understand.
And its super easy to make.
In a heavy pot, combine 6 cups pomegranate juice with 3/4 cup sugar and 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice. Cook at a low simmer, stirring regularly, until thickened to a consistency of syrup. This took around an hour for me. I know its ready when my spoon can leave a slight trace when I pull it though the pot. You can also check by pouring the contents into a measuring cup. You want to reduce it to about 2 cups. Pour into a clean glass jar, let cool, and store in the fridge.
Its easy to scale up or down the recipe, but I use between 1- 2 cups of it a year. According to the interwebs, its good for 6 months, but I’ve used mine that was over a year old and it was perfectly fine. As it gets older, the sugars crystalize a bit and thicken, but that is easily remedied by heating the jar in a pan of warm water and stirring (like how you would warm honey).
I use pomegranate molasses in many ways, and it naturally pairs well with Middle Eastern cuisine. Here are some ideas was that I use it in my kitchen:
- Toss or drizzle over roasted veggies, with or without browned butter. I like it with carrots or winter squash.
- Add to vinaigrette. It’s great with olive oil and lemon. A favorite to use it on is this Arugula and Halloumi Salad.
- Brush on meat as a glaze. It works with beef, chicken, duck, and particularly lamb.
- Add to sauces or relishes for meat or veggies.
- Drizzle over grains and greens. Ottolenghi’s Jerusalem has a great Wheat Berry & Swiss Chard with Pomegranate Molasses recipe.
How do you use pomegranate molasses?