pomegranateIn Turkey, the pomegranate existed for thousands of years (yes, it is indeed true) and it is loved and known for its many fine qualities. But also in the Middle East (and in the old Ottoman Empire) is the fruit immensely popular. Of course, the seeds have been used in cooking due to the unique sour / sweet taste, which is really good in particular desserts (and drinks !!). The juice is also often used to color blankets and clothes (or walls if you’re not careful). The unique shape is a recurring theme in many things, and is imitated on virtually everything from tea cups, ashtrays and key rings for buildings, logos and often at the beautiful Kütahya porcelain (similar to Royal Copenhagen in Denmark or Wedgewood in UK).tea-set

In my world, there is nothing more beautiful and more delicious than the pomegranate. It has the most beautiful exterior, with a pretty and unique form, a great rustic and intense red color and it’s filled with hundreds of small bombs filled with juice and flavor. What’s not to like ?? Yes, it would then just be how to tinker such a bandit. Gosh it is difficult (but still worth the effort). There are about 1 zilliard good advice on how to peel it and get the small red rubies out. The easiest way is of course just to race down to the supermarket and buy one of those little packets from the cold counter, where you get the cores finished and ready. Oh … it’s neither fun or challenging (only expensive – and possibly not entirely fresh). Whether you cut a hole, plugs the apple in a bowl and core it under water, or whether you cut it in half and then in small boats, so you can more easily get bunches out – that you may freely decide. Possibly you have your own method, but try do have a look at this Youtube  video for inspiration. Although you may not be solid in Turkish, I’m sure you can understand the idea of it all (and then you get it the authentic way – right from the picking of the apple 😀) https://www.youtube.com/watch ? v = WF7Yg3jXW1o (unfortunately the link opens in the same window, so remember to come back and read the rest 😉) Pomegranate tree

I can certainly guarantee you, that you must not do as I did, the first time I interfered with those red bandits. We were at my father in laws, and I did my very best to help out and pick a few apples quickly and efficiently. Unfortunately, just with the result, that I almost spray painted the kitchen wall behind me – UPS. Pardon in-law !!! I am sure that you can still see a few splashes or two, if you really look closely.

But then – in love and war all trick couts – and you have to do someting to ensure the beautiful red cores ? At home we use a lot of pomegranates. Especially for salads (they are simply phenomenal in a raw kale salad). We sometimes use as Friday candy or snacks and the kids love them. Really.

But for Turkish food, the pomegranate is also used in desserts, ice cream, cakes, casseroles and especially juice and juice. I am lucky that my father in law often make pomegranate juice. It’s a bit sour, but very, very fresh – and it simply taste divine mixed with a slightly sweet Asti, Champagne (or just a little sparkling water). Sometimes I also have a glass of pure juice in the morning instead of a ginger shot. Thinking that it is filled with good vitamins and antioxidants (vitamin C and K, folic acid, protein and fiber). There is a lot of research in this fruit – for the simple reason that it is one of the healthiest fruits in the world (hooray …) and it should help everything from bad memory, high blood pressure, joint pain, infections and cancer. So just get started ….Granatæble saft

Perhaps you have come across Nar ekşisi, when you have been to Turkey? Nar ekşisi is the thick brown sauce, almost all restaurants use to pour over the salad together with olive oil. It has the consistency of syrup, but is available in both a slightly sweet and a more sour version. It’s a must have, so if you haven’t got it, then please do (you can get it from all ethnic greengrocers and in several large supermarkets). And you’ll will use it (it’s a bit like Balsamic vinegar) – just look here in this recipe for kısır.Nar ekşisi

Sometimes we are lucky, that my father in law comes to Denmark and visit us at Christmas time. It really is like having Santa visit (and it’s not just because of the white beard). Often he has a suitcase full of fresh oranges and beautiful pomegranates, nuts and many other goodies, so it is a truly celebration. But the most beautiful sight is, when we’re in Turkey in the fall, and my father in law has picked all the fruits from the trees and the garage is full. Don’t you think?granatæble

Fortunately, you can get pomegranate up here – in all sizes and colors. My favorite is the red one although the whites also tastes fine (but slightly more anonymous). The season is during the winter, so it’s just as if pomegranate has become associated with Christmas. But never mind – it is also so fancy and nice to look at. Sometimes we sacrifice one and covers it in glitter – that looks so fine.