Minimal Monday: Pomegranate Molasses

I recently discovered pomegranate molasses and there’s been no looking back since.  It’s a condiment that is really just a concentrated form of pomegranate juice, and it’s been used in Persian and Arabic cuisines for centuries.  It has no relationship to molasses as we know it except that it has a similar consistency. Actually, its like no other food or condiment I can think of.  The flavor is intensely sweet tart, and it can be used in everything from meat glazes to salad dressings to desserts.

It’s truly a wonder condiment because it intensifies the flavor of so many foods without adding fat or salt.  It works really well with the slightly bitter flavor of cabbages and greens.  I’ve drizzled it on Seared Red Cabbage Wedges, Brussels sprouts, and spinach, and I’m just getting started.

Pomegranate molasses can be a little hard to find, and so I was excited when I saw a recipe for a homemade version over at A Feast for the Eyes.  I was thrilled at how simple the process is—a little sugar, a touch of fresh lemon juice, and a quart of pomegranate juice (now available in all supermarkets since it’s become known as a ‘power food’) gets slowly reduced down on the stove into a thick syrup.  That’s it.  I like to put it in a bottle with a pour spout so I can control the drizzle factor.  But you can bottle or jar it any way you like.

It’s interesting because for me, fresh pomegranates are gorgeous, but don’t have that much flavor.  In fact, biting down on the seeds can be a disappointing experience, the inner pith is bitter, and they only contain a tantalizingly miniscule burst of juice.  But in this reduced syrup form, you can really taste the unique flavor of the fruit.  You’ll love this, and you won’t be able to stop drizzling it on anything and everything.

Minimal Monday: Pomegranate Molasses

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 qt pomegranate juice (I used Pom)

Instructions

  1. Put the sugar, lemon juice and pomegranate juice in a heavy pot, I used a large enameled cast iron stew pot. Set the heat to medium and stir until the sugar dissolves. Turn the heat down to somewhere between medium and medium low and continue heating the mixture until it has reduced to a thick syrup. This will take anywhere from 70 to 120 minutes, depending on the size of your pot and the level of heat. The liquid should be just simmering if you want to make the quickest work of it.
  2. When the liquid is thick and syrupy, and has reduced to one cup, take it off the heat. Let it cool in the pan for about 15 minutes, then transfer to a bottle or jar. Cool it completely before putting on a lid and then refrigerate.
https://theviewfromgreatisland.com/minimal-monday-pomegranate-molasses/

Note:

  • If you’re unsure about whether the molasses has reduced enough, pour it into a Pyrex measuring cup to check.  I reduced mine to one cup and it is quite thick.  Debby marked the starting level on a wooden spoon, and then used that to check her progress, which I thought was a great idea.  You can also use a long toothpick or wooden skewer.  It’s very much like jam making; the liquid will visibly  change its appearance when it’s close to being done. it becomes very thick and glossy, and viscous bubbles will cover the entire surface.
There you have it, yet another creative but simple holiday or host gift.  But I wouldn’t blame you if you keep it for yourself.  That’s my plan.
Have a happy Monday!

15 Comments

  • Reply
    Phyllis
    January 18, 2014 at 9:33 am

    I am going to try this. I also make apple syrup with nothing but fresh apple cider. Boil it slowly until it reaches the consistency you would like, thin for syrup, thicker for a molasses. I don’t add any sugar but you can if you wish. Try it sometime, you will love it. I live close to Apple Hill in No. Calif. so it isn’t a problem to get the fresh cider. Awesome smell in your kitchen when cooking it.

  • Reply
    Sue
    August 26, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    I don’t see why not, but even on the stove you don’t have to babysit it too much, just at the end.

  • Reply
    Patricia Reitz
    December 20, 2012 at 2:39 am

    Oh my – pomegranate love! Too bad I used the last of my poms just the other day. Pinning this recipe for next time!!

  • Reply
    FrankO
    December 18, 2012 at 7:21 pm

    you can add a tablespoon of vodka to it after you remove it from the heat and before you put it in the jar or what have you, to help preserve it.

  • Reply
    Mary Younkin
    December 18, 2012 at 2:42 pm

    This sounds absolutely AMAZING! I can’t even imagine how hard it would be to make pomegranate juice from scratch. I find pomegranates just as disappointing as you do, despite their gorgeous appearance.

  • Reply
    fiftyfinally
    December 17, 2012 at 9:06 pm

    I’ve always wanted to try make the actual juice…one of these days.

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      December 17, 2012 at 9:21 pm

      Now that would be an interesting project! I wonder how many pomegranates it would take to make a glass of juice. A lot, I bet.

  • Reply
    Debby Foodiewife
    December 18, 2012 at 1:24 am

    Thanks so much for the Blog Love and the link! When I first made this, I thought to myself that the color would make a beautiful nail polish. It’s so easy to make, isn’t it? I’m honored to be featured on your blog, because I’m a HUGE fan of yours!

  • Reply
    l o v e l y t h i n g s
    December 17, 2012 at 10:28 pm

    I’ll bet this is delicious…and I’m with you on the fresh pomegranate. I love the beauty of them, but then what?

  • Reply
    Heather Schmitt-Gonzalez
    December 17, 2012 at 9:58 pm

    I have to agree – this stuff is amazing! It reminds me of a really good, aged balsamic. I just want to lick it from a spoon.

  • Reply
    Sam @ My Carolina Kitchen
    December 17, 2012 at 8:56 pm

    I just read a recipe in one of Rozanne Gold’s cookbooks calling for pomegranate molasses. I had no idea where to buy it and low and behold, here is a homemade version on your blog today. Thanks!
    Sam

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      December 17, 2012 at 9:15 pm

      I found some in the new Middle Eastern section of my supermarket, but it’s so much more fun to make it yourself!

  • Reply
    Averie @ Averie Cooks
    December 17, 2012 at 8:07 pm

    This is like the best marriage of where pomegranate juice meets like a balsamic vinegar reduction. And creates…pom molasses. Oh, I swear, I could pour this on anything & everything! This is so me, Sue!

    • Reply
      Sue/the view from great island
      December 17, 2012 at 9:14 pm

      I guess balsamic vinegar is the best comparison to this, they both have such intense flavor. The pomegranate molasses has a nice fruitiness that balsamic vinegar doesn’t have, though.

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