rack with pomegranate hibiscus agrodulce prepared by
Chef Ian Cookson at the Vineyard Restaurant in Madera,
Calif. It sits on a bed of spinach and butternut
squash, garnished with mint and pomegranate seeds
are one of fallís favorite fruits in the central San
Joaquin Valley, with its deep-red colored skin protecting
hundreds of tiny arils that burst with sweet tart flavor
Valley is the center of the nationís pomegranate industry.
It grows several varieties for the fresh market as well as
juicing. The tiny southeast Fresno County community of Del
Rey is the home of the largest pomegranate juicing plant in
the nation. Operated by POM Wonderful, a division of
Paramount Farms, the factory produces juice, fresh
pomegranates and packaged arils.
food manufacturers have also joined the pomegranate
bandwagon and are providing the arils in cup-sized packages
that are sold to grocery stores and schools.
people are becoming interested in pomegranates, but they donít
always want to peel them," says David Anthony, domestic
sales manager for the Firebaugh-based Ruby Fresh. "We
make it easy for them."
Fresh recently sold a shipment of packaged arils to schools
in Oklahoma and Kansas City. Locally, consumers can find
Ruby Freshís packaged arils at Fresh & Easy, Sprouts
Farmers Market, Costco and Samís Club.
and restaurant owners say the easier it is to use the
juice-packed arils, the better.
Mariscotti, owner of the Vineyard Restaurant in Madera, says
that while the trend of using pomegranates in drinks maybe
waning, chefs continue to use pomegranates for taste and
color. Marinades and sauces are popular uses at the
a marinade it has such a soft, rich flavor that really adds
a nice balance," Mariscotti says. "With lemons or
wines marinades the flavor can sometimes be
likes to use a pomegranate marinate on chicken and lamb. You
can marinate chicken for just and hour, but lamb is best
when marinaded over night.
sauces are also a nice way to add the pomegranates.
year, shoppers will appreciate that despite an ongoing
drought, pomegranates have not been deeply affected. If
anything, the hot summer has reduced yields just slightly,
said farmer Dennis Simonian.
are picking our fruit and things look really good, the fruit
is also tasting really good," says Simonian, who
operates Simonian Farms on the corner of Clovis and Jensen
avenues. "We should have a nice crop."
shopping for pomegranates, Simonian recommends looking for
fruit that has a deep red color and feels solid. The heavier
the better. Avoid fruit that has a dry leathery skin. The
skin should be slightly glossy.
small individual lamb chops
cup extra-virgin olive oil
garlic cloves, pressed or minced
cup Pomegranate Molasses with a Kick*
tablespoon dried mint, crushed
tablespoon dried rosemary, crushed
salt and freshly ground pepper
large bowl, whisk the olive oil with garlic, Angel Red
Pomegranate Molasses, mint, rosemary, 2 teaspoons of salt
and a generous pinch of pepper.
lamb chops and turn to coat with Angel Red Pomegranate
Molasses; let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
light a grill or preheat a grill pan.
season the chops with salt and pepper; grill over moderately
high heat, turning, until they are lightly charred outside
and medium-rare within, 4-6 minutes.
1/4 cup of Pomegranate Molasses onto grilled lamb chops.
Molasses with a Kick
pomegranates, seeded and juiced
tablespoons fresh lemon juice
serrano chili pepper, cut in halve lengthwise, may
substitute fresh serrano or jalapeno chili pepper
2 cups pomegranate juice, sugar, lemon juice and serrano
chili pepper into a saucepan. Bring to a boil, let simmer
for 30 minutes then strain pepper halves and any seeds from
juice mixture, discard pepper. Place juice mixture back into
the saucepan and continue to simmer over moderate heat,
about 20 minutes longer.
juice mixture carefully towards the end of cooking time, the
juice will form small bubbles, stir at this stage until the
juice has a syrup consistency and has reduced to 1/2 cup.
Remove from heat and let cool.
Thurlow, Mountain View Fruit Sales
cup butter, softened
tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon vanilla
16-ounce carton dairy sour cream
teaspoon finely shredded lemon peel
cup packed brown sugar
cups plus 1/4 cup all purpose flour
4 8 oz
pkg cream cheese, softened
cups plus 1/4 cup granulated sugar
cups fresh pomegranate arils
oven to 350 degrees F. In a mixing bowl beat butter on
medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar. Beat
until combined. Add 1 egg; beat well. Beat in 1 1/4 cups
flour until combined. Divide dough in half. Cover and
refrigerate one portion. Spread unrefrigerated dough half on
bottom of ungreased 10-inch spring-form pan with sides
removed, spreading dough to edges. Place on baking sheet.
Bake for 10 minutes. Cool completely. When cool, attach
sides of pan. Press chilled dough onto sides to a height of
1 3/4 inches, using a thin metal spatula to spread dough.
Reduce oven temp to 325 degrees F.
filling, in an extra large mixing bowl beat cream cheese and
1 1/4 cups granulated sugar until fluffy. Beat in the
remaining flour on low speed until smooth. Add remaining 3
eggs and 1 tablespoon vanilla all at once, beating on low
speed just until combined. Stir in 1/2 cup sour cream, the
lemon peel and 3/4 cup of the pomegranate seeds. Pour
filling into crust-lined pan. Place on baking sheet. Bake
for 65 minutes or until edges are puffed.
together remaining sour cream, sugar and vanilla. Spread
sour cream mixture over top of baked cheesecake. Return to
oven; bake for 10 minutes more. Remove from oven. Cool on
wire rack for 15 minutes. Loosen crust from sides of pan.
Cool for 30 minutes more. Remove sides of pan; cool
completely. Cover; chill 4 hours or overnight.
cheesecake and pomegranate sauce from refrigerator 15
minutes before serving. Spoon some sauce over top of
cheesecake; pile remaining 3/4 cup pomegranate seeds in
center of cheesecake.