Friday, 2 November 2012

Fabulous Friday: Cocktail Hour

Pomegranate Cosmo
Rachel, Dublin

My name is Rachel and I am a pomegranate addict.  Phew, it feels so good to get that off my chest!  Seriously though, I think I may be developing a problem.  It is being exacerbated by the fact that one of the supermarkets is running an insanely good deal of two for a euro at the moment; Dunnes are facilitating my addiction. Not even the fact that they  can be a pain in the proverbial to peel is putting me off (see below for how to tackle a pomegranate). 

I'm not sure what it is about them, the glorious ruby red seeds, the delicious not too sweet flavour, or the smug satisfaction of how good all those antioxidants must be for me.  When I like something this much there is only one thing to do: make a cocktail out of it!

When thinking of cocktail recipes that might suit a pomegranate it is not hard to find ideas.  Grenadine syrup, used in a Tequila Sunrise, Singapore Sling etc., was originally made from pomegranates - the French word for them being 'grenade', though modern grenadine tends to be an artificial concoction bearing little resemblance to the fruit. 

When I spied this recipe I knew that I had to try combining my new favourite fruit with my longtime favourite cocktail, the Cosmopolitan.  However, I found the proportions of this recipe weren't right, it was far too strong with vodka and the pomegranate flavour was overpowered completely.  I then tried it with Aoife's cosmo recipe which was much more successful; still a good alcohol kick but it allowed the fruit flavours to shine through.  Plus, there's absolutely no guilt involved in drinking one of these, all those antioxidants cancel out the alcohol, right?

pomegranate cosmo (makes one)

35ml vodka
17.5ml triple sec
70ml pomegranate juice
17.5ml freshly squeezed lime juice
large handful of ice cubes
lime slice, teaspoon pomegranate seeds, large cocktail stick/skewer (garnish)

Measure all of your ingredients into a cocktail shaker and add the ice.  Shake until well chilled.  Strain into a martini glass.  Thread a slice of lime onto the cocktail stick, push the edges together so there is a shallow dip and balance the pomegranate seeds in the middle.  You may wish to have a spare glass nearby so that you can get the balance of your lime slice right without losing all your pomegranate seeds into your cocktail.

how to peel and juice a pomegranate

*Make a shallow, circular incision around the top (where the protruding bit is) of your pomegranate.  Don't cut too deep or you will burst some seeds.  Peel the top off.
*Make three, shallow, vertical cuts in the skin of the pomegranate that follow the lines of white pith that you are able to see.  
*Pull the pomegranate apart along these lines so that you have three sections.
*Remove any large pieces of white pith and then push the segments gently to invert them.  Place them in a bowl of water.  Remove the seeds by 'rolling' them gently away from the skin with the side of your thumb into the water.
*The remaining white pith will float to the surface of the water while the seeds sink.  You can skim off the pith with a small sieve or your fingers and then drain the seeds.
*Juice the seeds by placing them in a blender and quickly pulsing them 5-8 times. Do not pulse too much or you will break up the hard inner seed and turn your juice cloudy.  
*Strain the juice through a sieve into a bowl.  Use the back of a spoon to press
down on the seeds to get all the juice out.  I got about 100ml of juice from one pomegranate.

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