If you know me, you know I get really excited about seasonal foods! Our food is most nutrient dense and tasty when eaten in season, so today I want to celebrate a seasonal fruit that doesn't get quite as much attention as pumpkins and apples do this time of year. Pomegranates!
Here are some quick facts about pomegranates: peak pomegranate season is October-February. Pomegranates grow on short, wide, leafy trees (yup, like the one pictured) and are best picked when red all around, presenting with a rough skin. Pomegranates can be tricky to open (not to mention messy), so it's best to go at them under a bowl of cold water.
Now what about health benefits? Well, not surprisingly, I've got good news for you. Pomegranates are PACKED with nutrients that help to regulate digestion, keep your immune system strong, promote healthy blood clotting, and aid in cell repair. Some of those nutrients are fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K, and folate. Plus, the pomegranate is a highly hydrating fruit, which is fitting for this time of year when the weather begins to dry us out.
Feeling a little stuck on how to start using pomegranates in meal prep? I've got some ideas for you:
-Salads, salads, salads...pomegranates pair so nicely with just about any dark green, nut, and citrus dressing combo.
-Serve sprinkled over roasted butternut squash.
-Make a pomegranate ice ring to rest in a healthy holiday punch recipe.
-Eat them in your morning oatmeal.
-Create a simple winter fruit salad with chopped apples, clementine sections, chopped fuyu persimmons, and pomegranate seeds.
-Infuse your water with them.
-Use the juice to naturally color your sugar for Christmas cookie decorating (wear an apron!).
-Decorate with them!
Cheers to pomegranates.