How to Seed a Pomegranate

Whole-Pomegranate

Pomegranates are much tougher to spell than to peel and seed.

How do you get from this gorgeous, tough skinned orb with a trumpet shaped stem to a plate of sparkling rubies that burst sweet tart juice in the most meager of drops?

Pomredplate

First slice off a 1/4 inch from the top and bottom.

(This sounds familiar, doesn’t it? It’s not too different from supreming an orange, up to this point, which is why I wrote that post first. Or that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.)

PomSlice

Next, score the pomegranate five or six times, from the top to the bottom. I score in between the seed clusters. To score, you slice just through the skin — no further, from top to bottom.

Pomscore

Peel back the skin, and break the pomegranate into sections.

It’s not a bad idea to have a couple paper towels handy to wipe up the magenta juice that splatters here and there.

Pomsections

Drop the sections into a large bowl of cold water, and gently start massaging them between your fingers. The seeds will fall to the bottom of the bowl, while the pithy membranes float to the top.

Pomfloat

Scoop off the floating pith. Might want to swish your hands around a few times in the seeds, just to coax a few more clinging pith skins to give it up and float to the surface.

PomStrain

Finally, strain the seeds in a colander. Now they’re ready to use anyway you see fit — and they will keep in the refrigerator for a week or two.

Garnish salads, desserts (lovely on bread pudding or pumpkin cheesecake) or even on guacamole.

Pomegranates are in season between late October and early February, but peak season is now.

Pomplate

I picked one up for $2 at a local grocery store, and saw a package of fresh peeled seeds for — gulp — $6, which is one reason why I seed them myself.

The other reason is purely nonsensical. I just like the way they feel in my hands.

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11 Comments

Filed under Tips & Tutorials

11 responses to “How to Seed a Pomegranate

  1. You’re a life saver! I’ve always wondered how get all of those little buggers out. Thanks for the tip!

    • Hi Amanda… thanks for the comment.
      When I was growing up, my mom would slice a pomegranate in half. She’d hand one half to me, the other half to my older brother, and then she would shoo us outside to eat them.

      We’d have pink mouths, hands and clothes, but it was so fun, and since they only showed up in the market this time of year, it was always a special treat.

  2. marketmaster

    This is the first time I have seen anyone except my mother explain this way of opening a pomegranate. The only thing she does differently is to start by cutting around the flower end, making a cone-shaped cut into the core instead of lopping off the top.

    The juice does stain, and even my mother doesn’t have a solution for that except to wear old clothes because you will get juice on yourself. They are so worth it!

    • Marketmaster…thanks for stopping by.

      Ah, I can see why your mom cuts a cone-shaped hole, as the center near the top is all pith.

      Yes, staining. My mom didn’t have an answer for that either. Somehow we didn’t seem to care.

  3. Now that is a great tip! I’d save more seeds this way! After I learned how to supreme an orange from your previous post, this shouldn’t be too hard 🙂 Thanks!

    • Hi Alisa… thanks for commenting! And we both like the water trick. I laughed at your “keep someone busy” comment. This is a great task for those “happy hands” that want to get in the kitchen with you.

  4. Oh, wow. Like jewels. So lovely. And so yummy!

  5. Danielle M

    I grew up in Kansas and had never seen a pomegrante until I moved here. I took some home for Christmas one year and I think that was the first my mom had seen them. Unfortunately, no one ever told me this easy trick, so I always quarter and pick the seeds apart! I know, some get cut in half that way!
    PS-before I read this post, I had seeds on my granola cereal this week!

  6. I agree with the above commenters. I’ve never seen anyone illustrate in such a beautiful but simple way how to do this. I’m always tempted to buy pomegranates but never really knew how to handle them. So, thanks!

    Your photography of the pomegranate seeds is really nice, by the way. Love the one of the seeds on the red plate especially.

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