Kitchen Confidence

Unsung Ingredient: Pomegranate Molasses

By • October 2, 2012 • 32 Comments

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Inspired by conversations on the FOOD52 Hotline, we're sharing tips and tricks that make navigating all of our kitchens easier and more fun. Today we're discussing how to use up that bottle of pomegranate molasses.

Pomegranate Molasses

Have you ever brought home a bottle of pomegranate molasses to make a particular recipe, and then left the bottle lingering in your pantry, unsure of what else to do with it? Or have you seen a bottle on the grocery store shelf, felt intimidated, and avoided it?  

We're here to encourage you to make the most of this unsung ingredient. If you're looking for new ways to use the mostly-full bottle in your kitchen, or if you're just curious about a new ingredient, we've got you covered. 

Pomegranate Molasses

First thing's first: What exactly is it? 

Pomegranate molasses is a syrup of boiled pomegranate juice, most commonly used in Middle Eastern cuisine. It has an intense sweet-and-sour flavor that is often compared to balsamic, and like balsamic, a little goes a long way. And as you'll see, pomegranate molasses can be used in as many ways you can imagine. 

Pomegranate Molasses Soda

Drink it up: We stirred some into a glass of sparkling water for a bright and refreshing soda. We're sure it can be used in all sorts of boozy drinks that just haven't been invented yet, so get creative and start experimenting.

Pomegranate Molasses

Get traditional: 

Fesenjoon is an Iranian stew of ground walnuts, pomegranate molasses, dried plums and chicken, served over rice. Our Assistant Editor Nozlee Samadzadeh says this is the most popular use of pomegranate molasses in Iranian cooking and, after testing the recipe her mother -- and Food52 community member cookingProf -- shared with us, we can see why. Comforting and complex, it's a perfect cold-weather meal.

Mouhamara, a dip of red bell peppers, ground walnuts and pomegranate molasses, deserves a spot alongside hummus and baba ghanoush on your next meze platter. The sweetness of this dip nicely counters the garlicky saltiness of the others. We're partial to Paula Wolfert's recipe.  

Pomegranate Roasted Carrots
Pair these carrots with fesenjoon and you've got a dinner we'd join you for. 

Roast with it: Melissa Clark suggests roasting carrots with a pomegranate glaze, and we're crazy about the idea. But don't stop there! Think of all the roasted vegetables that could benefit from a little tangy sweetness. We're imagining cauliflower and parsnips, but the possibilities are endless. 

Mix it with meat: Pomegranate molasses is a great complement for smoky rich flavors -- grilled meats come to mind. Brush it onto chicken or steak before grilling or roasting. Want to pair it with pork? You can always glaze a ham with it. 

Salad

Give your vinegar a break: Mix some olive oil with pomegranate molasses for a dead-simple new salad dressing. If you're looking for a slightly more doctored dressing, check out this arugula and pear salad.

Add depth to your dessert: Yes, pomegranate molasses goes well with savory foods, but what about dessert? How about using it in a cake? (Save us a piece, if you can.) We also like the idea of pouring it over cheesecake or custard. 

How do you like to put pomegranate molasses to use? 

Tags: Kitchen Confidence, pomegranate molasses, pomegranate, how-to & diy

Comments (32)

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23 days ago Carolyn Cobb

Now I have other uses for my bottle of Pom. Molasses! Cannot wait to try some of these recipes. My carrots are still young in the garden buy I will roast some with the molasses when ICan

Stringio

3 months ago Layla Corcoran

As someone who once made gingerbread with pomegranate molasses instead of blackstrap molasses, be careful how much you ingest as pomegranate can act as a laxative.

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about 1 year ago lauren hoover

Just finished my Red Wine and Port Reduction Sauce with 1/4 cup pomegranate molasses and served it with crispy duck and pureed parsnips and a good glass of red wine! Divine! Has anyone poured it over meat and baked it? Does it burn easily due to high sugar content? I would imagine it's best to use it the last 10 minutes.??
www.NoWheatNoDairyNoProblem...

Stringio

about 1 year ago Stef Hesse

You can use pomegranate molasses in baking as well! I just posted a recipe for pomegranate molasses ginger cookies on my blog: http://adventuresoftinygirl...
I was a bit out of ideas for the time being after cranking out that recipe though, so I am so glad I found this page--I would hate to see the bottle waste away in my pantry.

Jwl_001

over 1 year ago jwlucas

I recently bought grape molasses from a Lebanese market. Use the same way?

Marnely1_1_

over 1 year ago Marnely

I made an easy dessert with pom and chocolate! http://honestcooking.com...

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over 1 year ago zahavah

not sure if my previous comment went through...on the off-change that there was a delay in posting, I'll refrain from writing a dupe, but check out the tomato tarte tatin with pomegranate and mint that I posted a few months ago. Works great with the grape tomatoes that are currently the only decent tomatoes in the market these days!

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over 1 year ago zahavah

I've been making Melissa Clark's pom-roasted carrots since I read the book. They caramelize gorgeously. Thinking of developing a pomegranate caramel myself! I also use it for lamb, brisket, and an amazing tomato tarte tatin. And I haven't even told you about my pomegranate-dark chocolate-walnut biscotti (I pretend they're "antioxidant). I'm a little pomegranate syrup obsessed these days!

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over 1 year ago DC Donna

i stir a small amount in pimm's cups. delicious!

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over 1 year ago Fairmount_market

Pomegranate molasses is a key ingredient in kisir, a Turkish bulgar salad. i've also used it in a version made with wheat berries.

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over 1 year ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

Pomegranate molasses + Manzilla or other off-dry sherry + tamari + red wine vinegar stirred into black bean soup where the only other ingredients (beside a light vegetable stock) are onions and garlic, and a garnish of pumpkin seeds. Been meaning to post that recipe now that the we're officially into fall . . . . ;o)

Stringio

3 months ago Layla Corcoran

What is tamari?

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over 1 year ago Valhalla

I love pomegranate molasses, and I love Persian food. As a vegetarian, I can sometimes find it difficult to find adaptations of some Persian dishes. The chicken Fesenjoon sent me scampering to the internets to find a suitable substitution (tofu just doesn't seem right). I happened upon this recipe which uses butternut squash--bingo!
http://roeandstuff.wordpress...

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over 1 year ago searchlight

Pomegranate molasses goes very well in mixed bourbon drinks - I make very tasty Old Fashioneds with it.

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over 1 year ago Randi

Sounds delish. Do you skip any traditional OF ingredients?

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over 1 year ago Randi

Sounds delish. Do you skip any traditional OF ingredients?

Kandm

over 1 year ago Kristy Mucci

Kristy is an expert at making things pretty and a former Associate Editor of Food52.

All of these ideas sound great!

Baci1

over 1 year ago HalfPint

I drizzle pomegranate molasses on bacon-wrapped dates. Stole the idea from a catered party at work.

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over 1 year ago PistachioDoughnut

I forgot to add that the rice in the above pic looks so perfectly done..i loved it..

Noz_photo

over 1 year ago nzle

I'm flattered -- I'm no expert rice maker, despite being Iranian!

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over 1 year ago PistachioDoughnut

I like it on top of pancakes..seriously...and another way I have always used it in mouhamara dip and then used the dip as a sauce for pasta...and finally into ricotta crostini with a drizzle of molasses

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over 1 year ago Panfusine

I prefer using it in place of tamarind concentrate (when the recipe calls for it, similar consistency, ball park range of tartness with that bonus of that tinge of sweet).

Add a bit of Balsamic vinegar to make a hacked version of faux balsamic reduction!

Noz_photo

over 1 year ago nzle

My mom does the same thing with balsamic vinegar!

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over 1 year ago Panfusine

given its unique flavor, you'd never think that its a snap to make at home.. Its almost as much a routine as making ghee at home . I've never bought a bottle from the store..

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over 1 year ago carol_tanenbaum

PS -- think I'm going to try mixing a bit with good Prosecco!

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over 1 year ago leavesofjoy

It is awesome that way!

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over 1 year ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Amen to this. Pom molasses is one of my all-time favorite ingredients. Terrific over best-quality vanilla ice cream, terrific stirred into charred eggplant with tahini (see Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi for a superb recipe), with carrots, licked off of a spoon!! Nice highlight!

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over 1 year ago Panfusine

OOh, The ice cream idea sounds dreamy!...

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over 1 year ago em-i-lis

Emily is a trusted source on General Cooking.

it is!! my husband's very favorite- he actively turns down chocolate sauce in favor of the pom mol!