Middle Eastern

Stop Searching for Pomegranate Molasses & Make it at Home

Smack dab in the middle of Nowheresville, NY, my local grocery store is sparse, to say the least. It’s the kind of place where discovering a head of radicchio is akin to winning the vegetable lottery.

The condiment aisle, though, is both fulfilling and maddening. A jar of harissa is there one week and gone the next. There are either 3 kinds of tahini or none at all. And finding pomegranate molasses? Forget it.

Photo by James Ransom

The tart, thick, ruby red syrup was my ingredient unicorn. I longed to swirl it into stews, add it to muhammara, and mix it into marinades. I needed its piquant, almost pucker-worthy tang. So, sick of waiting, I decided to make pomegranate molasses myself.

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Luckily, making your own pomegranate molasses requires just three ingredients, a bit of time, and a lot of reducing. Essentially, you're boiling pomegranate juice for an hour or so, until it becomes syrup.

Homemade pomegranate molasses is less likely to get lost in the cabinet shuffle as the bottled kind (dregs are real, people): It keeps in your refrigerator for up to 6 months. That means you have no excuse not use it with reckless abandon. And given its sweet-and-sour, almost tannic depth (think: wine), this shouldn’t be a problem.

Here's how to do it:

Place all the ingredients in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Over medium heat, cook, stirring occasionally, until the sugar completely dissolves.

The pomegranate juice—not yet reduced. Photo by James Ransom

Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for 70 to 80 minutes, or until the mixture is the consistency of thick syrup.

With 80 minutes on the stove plus 20 minutes of cooling, you have molasses. Photo by Bobbi lin

Allow to cool for 30 minutes and then transfer the molasses to a glass jar to cool completely. It will keep, covered in the refrigerator, for up to 6 months.

And some recipes to help you use it up:

What's your favorite use for pomegranate molasses? Tell us in the comments!

3 Comments

Marit G. March 1, 2016
I can get pomegranates, but not the juice, how do I make this from the seeds?
 
Author Comment
Riddley G. March 2, 2016
Hi! You could try placing the seeds in a blender and pulsing until the seeds are broken up. Then, pour the seed mixture through a mesh strainer into a bowl, pressing the pulp against the strainer to extract as much juice as possible. I've never done this before, however it could be worth a shot!
 
Jona @. March 2, 2016
Or juice them with a juicer or even using a citrus juicer, by cutting the pomegranate in half and proceed as you would with a citrus fruit.