Food - Drink
What Is Pomegranate Molasses And What Dishes Is It Best In?
By SYLVIA TOMCZAK
Pomegranates may seem more intimidating than more common fruits, but they're actually very versatile. The seeds can be eaten raw, or used to make salads, desserts, juice, and even pomegranate molasses, a special, fruity ingredient that is syrupy, thick, and complex, but isn't made like traditional molasses at all.
While molasses is made by refining sugar beets and cane to create a thick, dark sweetener that is used all over the world, pomegranate molasses has roots in the Middle East, where it was used as a condiment to balance out fatty foods. The liquid can vary in color, but is typically a deep garnet or borderline-brown hue.
Pomegranate molasses is made from pure pomegranate juice, giving it a fruity, acidic flavor with a balance of sweet and tart. It's a main ingredient in Middle Eastern dishes like muhammara, kisir, and lamb kofte, but its potential is limitless; get your hands on a bottle, and you can use it in marinades, as a meat glaze, and more.
You can drizzle pomegranate molasses on roasted or grilled vegetables or add it to salad dressing for a flavor explosion similar to a balsamic glaze; plus, a spoonful in beans stews and dips like hummus adds plenty of complexity. If you've got a sweet tooth, use pomegranate molasses over ice cream, pancakes, and rice pudding.
You can also add pomegranate molasses to macerated fruits for topping angel food cake and other desserts, for a boost of even more fruity flavor and acidity. This special condiment can also be used to replace traditional molasses in some baked goods — think pomegranate molasses-infused gingerbread cookies and more.