One of my favorite, favorite FAVORITE items of the season is the pomegranate. Some people snack on popcorn or trail mix, I prefer to nom on pomegranate seeds. Not only does it taste delicious but it packs a huge antioxidant punch. I remember the first time I tried one...I was on a hike with my parents, around age 7, and they brought out this weird fruit with pretty little red berries. After my first try I knew this was a fruit I could truly love. Sadly, I didn't taste pomegranates again until the antioxidant craze kicked in during my first years of college. I suppose I got a bad apple (or pom, if you will) because it was tart, pale pink and nothing like the food I remembered loving so much that day. For the next few years I forgot about them.
While at my health food store a few weeks ago I noticed poms had just come into season. I was running low on fruit with the season's harvest ebbing away, so I decided to give them one more chance. Cracking open the fist-sized red fruit was a mess but worthwhile. The arils (seeds) were bright red, juicy and sweet. I was reunited and my passion for pommies was reawakened.
I'm normally an all-natural kinda gal and would never snub organic produce, but I've found that the giant poms from the POM company at my local Kroger are actually better than the ones for over twice the price at the health food store. They're bigger, redder and sweeter -- never bad things! So for this recipe I used those. Anywho. Enough about my love of pommies...here's how to make them so everyone in the family will enjoy. I got the idea for this recipe from the POM website, but I made several alterations given what I had on hand. I'm sure they're just as good either way -- I especially love these muffins with honey.
1/2c arils from 1 large pomegranate, approximately
1 tbsp baking powder
~2 tbsp finely grated fresh ginger
1 tbsp orange zest
1/3 c melted salted butter
Score the pomegranate with one cut, just breaking through the skin. Run a sink of cold water and submerge the pomegranate. Using both hands break it open and free the seeds -- they will sink while the extra stuff will float to the top of the water. Refridgerate any leftovers.
Preheat the oven to 400 and prepare 12 muffin cups.
Mix your dry ingredients and add the arils, orange zest and ginger. Make a well in the center of the bowl.
Whisk together the wet ingredients and pour them into the bowl. Whisk until batter is moist and there are no flourey lumps left. Spoon the batter into the muffin cups, top with sugar if you like. Bake for 15-20 minutes (my oven always takes longer), let them cool for about 10 before serving.