Monthly Archives: June 2009

A Passion for Pomegranate

I must have been about 8 or 9 years old when my dad handed me what I thought was a pretty weird-looking piece of fruit. I asked him what it was; and he casually replied, “It’s a Chinese apple. Wanna try it?” I watched as my father pried the piece of fruit with the little reddish purple pellets open, and I asked, “How do you eat those things? Are you supposed to eat THE SEEDS?!” Note: whenever a child thinks she is about to ingest seeds, images of a tree growing inside her instantly trigger a sense of terror/disgust. Dad dropped a few bits of fruit into my hand, and I nervously took a bite.

I have been hooked on pomegranates ever since.

I wait every year for them to come into season, and I scoop ‘em up by the bunch at my local market. The cashiers always look at them with some skepticism, and ask me the usual questions: how do you eat it? Aren’t they a pain in the neck to open? Don’t they stain your fingers, clothes, and anything they happen to land on? Well, they may be a challenge to open; and they may stain my fingers and clothing (sometimes); but they are so tasty, with that little burst of tartness that explodes when you bite into one of those little red gems.

Lately, when I can’t get pomegranates at the supermarket, I’ve had to make do with the occasional pomegranate martini. Which are delicious, by the way—those of you that can partake in alcoholic beverages of that variety may want to give it a try. But I digress.

I’ve purchased a few types of pomegranate juice at the health food store, but the flavor seems a bit, well, off. Sort of muddy, I guess. When the folks over at POM Wonderful offered to send me some of their juice to try, I jumped on the chance. I’d seen it at Publix, but was reluctant to pick it up because it was more expensive than the other brands I had tried, and I didn’t want to spend the money on it, only to be disappointed later (Hey, we’re living in some tough economic times, and I’m a bit of a high-maintenance gal—I try to save a buck where I can so that I can spend more money on shoes. Or makeup). I figured why not? I don’t have anything to lose with free juice, right?

So, the POM people came through, and a case of the stuff arrived at my house, along with lots of interesting literature about the health benefits of pomegranate juice; additionally, there was some info about medical research and POM 100% pomegranate juice. In the studies cited, regular consumption was found to improve cardiovascular, prostate, and erectile health. Not only that, but it is an antioxidant powerhouse, surpassing red wine, grape juice, blueberry juice, cranberry juice, green tea, vitamin C, and vitamin E in its antioxidant punch. More information about the research studies can be found on POM’s website. It all sounded good, but how did it taste?

We flew through the case; and Flamenco Dad, Zoe, and I loved it. The flavor was spot on: tart, not too sweet, and fresh-tasting. It didn’t have that muddy, dull flavor of some of the others pomegranate juices I had tried in the past. Honestly, I wasn’t expecting to like it as much as I do. Now I’m buying it every week to store in my fridge, and I drink it once every day—and I am working it into my grocery budget.

*Note: I do not receive monetary compensation for product reviews—I’m just here to share my opinions about products both good and bad.