Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Apples and Pomegranates

You know how in the story of Adam and Eve, tradition has it that Eve offered Adam a taste of an apple - the fruit of life?

I confess, I've often wondered how they're so sure it was an apple. In mythology, the pomegranate was the symbol of life And pomegranates have SO many health benefits (see below).

Years ago my daughter dressed as Persephone for a 2nd grade mythology project. I remember identifying with Demeter and thinking how awful it would be to lose your daughter to the underworld for half the year.


Which brings us to this dessert.

Since we just passed the equinox and are now officially in winter (even if the Christmas weather report looks like we're in the tropics!), it seems a good time to enjoy both apples and pomegranates.

That same daughter (26 now) worked with me to make this recipe for Thanksgiving dessert. You may remember that the older daughter brought that blueberry pie with the cornbread crust.

I can't claim any credit for the recipe - just for having the good sense to pass it on to you.

You can find the entire recipe here - Autumn Apple and Pomegranate Crumble

I know I just reminded us it was winter and the recipe says autumn, but it's been that kind of a week. Stick with me please. :)

I'm going to lead with the finished product to show you how delicious it looks (although you can just click that link and see Kate (with a K's) pictures.

This was ours -

The delicious topping kind of covers all the inside yumminess, so let me show you some of the ingredient steps.

So, really, why eat pomegranates?

It's definitely a hassle to separate the arils from the membrane.

But if you need stress relief, here's one way. Seeding a pomegranate 

or watch

There's the underwater method,

 but I don't like losing all that wonderful juice in the water.

THIS shows my favored method (and it has nothing to do with the name of the site being ShowMeTheCurry  ;)  )

If you don’t remember the story about Persephone, Hades, and the pomegranate, you can refresh your memory here.

So why am I wondering about the pomegranate and Eden? Just read about all the wonderful reasons to eat this marvelous fruit or drink the juice.

The pomegranate is a nutrient dense food source rich in phytochemical compounds. Pomegranates contain high levels of flavonoids and polyphenols, potent antioxidants offering protection against heart disease and cancer. A glass of pomegranate juice has more antioxidants than red wine, green tea, blueberries, and cranberries.  From Dr. Fuhrman: How to Live for Life
I have to admit, I had no idea pomegranates were so incredibly healthy. Just read some of the other data Dr. Furhman identifies:
Amazing Clinical Results
This fantastic little fruit recently made its way back into the news after some spectacular clinical results. Here’s what you need to know:
Compounds found only in pomegranates called punicalagins are shown to benefit the heart and blood vessels. Punicalagins are the major component responsible for pomegranate’s antioxidant and health benefits. They not only lower cholesterol, but also lower blood pressure and increase the speed at which heart blockages (atherosclerosis) melt away.
Recent medical research studied heart patients with severe carotid artery blockages. They were given an ounce of pomegranate juice each day for a year. Not only did study participants’ blood pressure lower by over 12 percent, but there was a 30 percent reduction in atherosclerotic plaque. Just as astounding, participants who did not take the pomegranate juice saw their atherosclerotic plaque increase by 9 percent.1
In other studies, potent antioxidant compounds found in pomegranates have shown to reduce platelet aggregation and naturally lower blood pressure, factors that prevent both heart attacks and strokes.2

Some nutritional info:  They contain no fat, low sugar and only 80 calories per 100-gram serving, yet they offer 5 grams of fiber and 15 percent of the recommended daily allowance of vitamin C.  Because it’s more concentrated, pomegranate juice is slightly higher in calories than whole seeds at 120 calories per 8-ounce serving. (From

I  have to admit, as much as I love pomegranates (and I really love the arils frozen), the season for getting really great ones is rather short. I've come to love drinking pomegranate juice in warm water as a tea substitute in the evenings.


  1. True confession: I've never had a pomegranate. I know...I live such a sheltered culinary life. But you have convinced me that I should give them a try. Like your tea idea. Oh -- and that picture of your daughter is adorable!

    1. Kav, I never had until a few years ago. My daughter introduced me to them. Oh my what I had been missing!

  2. Thanks for all the pomegranite de-seeding advice. I have pomegranates in my yard but always just give them away as I thought they were way too much work. lol I should try one of these methods.

    1. Oh my goodness, I wish I lived closer to you! I find the beating one the easiest, though I've gotten pretty good at the method the food cart driver uses.

  3. SANDRA!! I wish you could ship them here! I buy them, but they're usually expensive. Like 2 for $5.

    I love them! I've tried the water method and didn't like it for the same reason you said--I love the juice! I have usually just picked them out with my fingers or scooped with a spoon. But tapping it looks to keep from getting so much pith. Thank you for sharing, Mary/Cate!

    1. I remember reading one article from someone who'd grown up in the Middle East and she said they used to use hatpins to pick them out and eat them.