Pomegranate is the superfood to sink your teeth into
THE superfood I can't get enough of at the moment is pomegranate.
Full of antioxidants, vitamins, fibre and anti-inflammatories, the arils (not seeds, as they are commonly called) also pack a punch visually; their jewel-like appearance make just about any recipe look fabulous.
I've been rather naughty recently, buying imported fruit, but Australian pomegranates are now in season so make the most of them while you can.
A friend confessed to me recently he'd never eaten one as he didn't know how to prepare it. They're quite easy, although fiddly. Just cut the fruit in half and peel away the skin and pith, turning it inside out to release the arils. Wear an apron if you are wearing white! You can also do this in a bowl of cold water and skim off any bits of pith or the parchment-like membrane that surround the arils as they float to the top.
The sweet/sharp burst of flavour as you bite into a pomegranate aril is deliciously refreshing.
This salad is a traditional dish prepared in the Middle East; I like to use fresh mint and parsley but dill or coriander can also be used. Add some pistachios for crunch if you like.
Pic credit: 123rf
BARLEY POMEGRANATE SALAD
200g pearl barley
1 tsp salt, plus salt and pepper to taste for dressing
1/3 cup olive oil, divided
1/2 red onion, finely sliced
1 carrot, peeled and shredded
arils (seeds) of 1 pomegranate
1/4 cup chopped fresh herbs (mint and parsley are good)
2 tbsp pomegranate molasses
juice of half a lemon
Bring a pot of water to the boil and add barley along with the salt and one tablespoon of oil. Return to the boil, reduce heat and simmer for 20-25 minutes. Drain and allow to cool.
Heat another tablespoon of oil in a small frypan and cook onion over low heat for 4-5 minutes. Add carrot and cook for a further minute. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Combine barley, onion and carrot, pomegranate arils and herbs in a serving bowl. Combine remaining oil with pomegranate molasses, lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste in a screw-top jar and shake until combined.
Toss through salad and serve.