I love every month of the year. The special thing about November is a pomegranate fruit. This red royal berry (the size of an orange:-) comes from Persia, and is well known, appreciated and enjoyed in the Middle East, and South Asia from Mediterranean to Himalayas including India. I remember eating juicy red seeds as a child in Russia, when pomegranate became ripe down south and was delivered to our cold, snowy November northern province.
Pomegranate around the world
This Punica granatum fruit grows on a 6 foot tall tree. It is called granatapfel in German, melograna in Italy, granatapple in Sweden, Granada in Spain, granade in France and гранат in Russian.
One legend has it that pomegranate has 365 seeds inside, for every day of the year. Check and see if that is true:-) No wonder it is an ancient symbol of fertility! Old Armenian (country near Russia and Turkey) tradition is on the wedding day for a bride to throw a pomegranate against the wall. It is done to see how many seeds fall out – and that is how many children this woman will have.
Pomegranate blood building power
The fruit has a top that looks like a crown, and some say that pomegranate gave crown shape idea to people.
I used to tell my college friends to eat at least one pomegranate a year to make the blood rich. And I still say the same to my children and friends:-) Anything red is great for heart and blood. The juice is used to make grenadine, a flavoring for cocktails, sherbets and pickles. The pulp is boiled to a syrup and used in the Middle Eastern cuisine. Dried seeds are popular decoration for Indian bean dishes. Juice is great for marinating meat, it makes it tender.
The pretty vermillion pomegranate flower is the emblem of Spain. And the fruit is on a logo of many Turkish cities.
It is rich in vitamin C, B1, B2, B6, B12, E, A and antioxidants. Also magnesium, potassium, manganese, phosphorus, iodine, iron and sodium, as well as some organic acids and tannins. It lowers the blood sugar, and blood pressure.
It supports production of erythrocytes and hemoglobin. When kids eat it, they become smart and energetic. It supports immunity, blood vessels health, nervous system. Excellent for older people, especially after surgery.
Vegetarian choice delight
Pomegranate boasts 15 amino acids, almost half of which is only found in meat products. So it becomes a great addition to a vegetarian diet. Pomegranate juice is great during colds, coughs and fevers, for throat gargling and oral health. Just make sure you dilute is with water 1:1 as it is strong.
Check your nearest supermarket or health food store for pomegranates. The ideal fruit is red, big, heavy and hard without the soft spots or any green skin. The skin needs to be smooth and not have any smell. Seeds inside are beautiful red jewels, that are all uniform in shape.
The secret of opening the fruit
To open it cut off the crown part as a circle cover just through the skin, peel off the top with your hands. It has segments inside, just carefully cut the skin down along those segment borders and then open them up like a flower with your hands. Enjoy the beauty:-)
Intestinal health and pomegranate skin tea
When you eat them, it is normal to chew and swallow the white seed that is inside (they are not hard, and easily chewed), it is good for hormone balance. Once you peel the fruit save the skins. They are very good as tea for any stomach problem. You can dry them too and store in a glass jar. If you get a bug or diarrhea, get a 1-inch piece, and cover it with hot water in a cup, it steep for 10-15 minutes. The tea will be light yellow and bitter. Just take a sip or two, may be couple times a day. I always use it and it works very fast, and I learned it from my mom, that used it on us as children. The Hippocrates was using this tea for dysentery, salmonella and for washing bloody wounds. It also kills E.coli in a matter of hours. Just make sure you don’t use the skin tea a lot if you have constipation.
Also try it for the beauty. Take one tablespoon of the juice and mix it with a beaten egg white. Spread on clean face for 20 minutes. Wash with warm water. It improves the cell structure of your skin.
Russian Garnet Salad
We make a Pomegranate salad in Russia – we call it a Garnet Salad.
Layer shredded boiled potatoes, cubed chicken, boiled and shredded carrots, and boiled and shredded beets. Spread a layer of mayo between each vegetable and on top of beets. Sprinkle the pomegranate seeds on top. Delicious. Add it to your whipped cream, ice cream or green salad as beautiful garnish.
Get to the store fast before pomegranate season is over. The seeds freeze well too. Please share and comment below, we love hearing your thoughts!