At this moment I’m dropping fresh (top center) pomegranate seeds into my mouth. I love the way they glow dark red before changing to white at the center — like little Christmas lights.
A childhood friend first introduced me to this fruit. We were at her house and feeling peckish. Excitedly she ran to the fridge and pulled out a partially peeled fruit with red seeds peeking out from their little cubbyholes of white pulp.
“Have you ever had pomegranate?” she asked. Immediately enamored, I begged my mom for more of this wonderfully strange fruit. Reluctantly she agreed. It was the last one I’d have until my late 20’s and that one was dried.
This pomegranate I’m eating today is a good one. It’s juicy and tangy sweet, but not as sweet as the (over) dried seeds (lower right corner) I made. That pomegranate was from weeks ago and I guess it was too early in the season or just a bad pick on my part because fresh it was only so so.
Several years back (in the days before starting this blog) I planned out a meal for my parents that included pomegranate. Except it was just past the season and a fresh one wasn’t to be found. For quite a few bucks I did find a container of dried pomegranate.
It was just like eating candy.
Thinking of this I put the leftover only so so seeds onto a baking sheet and stuck them in a low oven. The lowest my oven would go. Several hours later they were slightly burnt, ever so much sweeter, and every time I stepped into the kitchen looking for just a bite I walked out with a handful of them.
This slightly burnt edition wasn’t the batch I forgot about. On Sunday I went to bed early. Worried about over sleeping I woke up during the night and lay in bed disturbing the sleeping pets until I remembered about the pomegranate drying in the oven.
I was determined to achieve the perfect candy-like dried pomegranate. Now, I have an old oven where the pilot light is always on and the oven is always hot. Worried about burning this second pomegranate I decided to turn it off and let just the lasting warmth finish them off. They were pulled out of the oven dried, but not overly so (bottom left corner).
While they still aren’t perfect I don’t mind having three varieties to choose from depending on my mood. So the fresh seeds became a mid-afternoon snack at work. The semi-dried were great on dinner’s steamed green beans. And the slightly burnt were a great addition to a granola and yogurt breakfast.