Ring in the New Year with this refreshing Pomegranate Cosmos recipe, made with pomegranate juice, vodka, orange liqueur and lime juice. Pomegranate are deliciously sweet and juicy this time of year. A great time to try Pomegranate Cosmos, if you have never had one.
To make this Pomegranate Cosmos recipe, a store-bought pomegranate juice will work but a fresh compressed juice is even better. A store bought is sweeter because of added sugar but a fresh one is also sweet with a bit of tart or sour taste to it.
Luckily, I have a pomegranate tree which is actually a shrub. My shrub has finally matured and it is bearing deep ruby red fruits. On its early years, the inside was white. The outside was green that turned slightly red and white on the inside. I was disappointed thinking I got the ornamental plant. For a few years, it was this way until last year. Now, it looks like the pomegranate I get in stores.
I finally discovered the best time to pick it. Once I see the birds surrounding my pomegranate bush and singing happily, that is a sign my pomegranates are ready to be picked. The birds are pecking on the cracked pomegranate skin to get to the glistening, sweet and juicy seeds also known as arils.
When in season, I always bought pomegranate which is pretty expensive. Two of my co-workers, who owned a bush, noticed I love pomegranate and started bringing me fruits. To my surprise, it grows well in our area. I planted two, one survived and one died not realizing it was not getting enough water.
How to Remove Pomegranate Seeds or Arils
First, you have to crack open the pomegranate and remove the edible sweet seeds known as arils. With a knife, insert and cut the center of fruit or if fruit has a crack, it is much easier to start in that area. The skin of a pomegranate is hard and thick so be careful when cutting with a knife. One of the things I discovered after picking the fruit, leave it in the counter for a few days. Fruit ripens more and the skin gets drier and thinner which is much easier to open.
Then with a spoon, a small knife or with your fingers remove the seeds. The pomegranate seeds are enclosed in a white spongy pulp divided into sections. Cut the fruit into 4 pieces, remove the white pulp and remove the seeds. Discard both skin and white stuff as they are not edible.
Pomegranate seeds are used in many ways: cooking, baking, juice, garnish, smoothies and alcoholic drinks.
How to Juice a Pomegranate
- Use a blender or a juicer. Depending on what your making you can partially or fully blend the seeds. Partially blend if you want the juice or fully blend if adding to cooking, baking or making jams.
- Use a zip lock bag. If using a small bag, place about a cup of seeds, seal and lay bag on a flat surface. Press seeds with your hands or get a small cutting board, place on top of bag, press gently and juice will be extracted.
- Place some seeds in a not so tall pitcher, then use a muddler to compress seeds. I prefer this way to extract the juice from the seeds. At first, you need to exert extra effort, after a while it gets easier. By the time your done, everything left are seeds.
Don’t discard seeds, use it for cooking, baking or jam. Place seeds in ice cube tray or zip lock bag and freeze it.
Kids can also enjoy this drink without the alcohol, instead add simple syrup. Click the link if you want the recipe.
Try another delicious drink this holiday, have a Spicy Margarita.
Pomegranate Cosmos Recipe
- 8 tablespoons vodka (start with 6 tbsp for a weaker drink)
- 4 tablespoon orange liqueur (Cointreau or Triple Sec)
- 1 cup fresh pomegranate juice or store bought (3 cups of pomegranate seeds = 1 cup juice)
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
- 2 tablespoons pomegranate seeds (added to drink if desired)
- Lime or orange peel garnish
- Chill small martini glasses in freezer for at least ½ to an hour.
- Use store bought pomegranate juice or 3 cups of fresh pomegranate seeds to make 1 cup pomegranate juice. Place promegranate seeds in a small pitcher or tall glass and press with a muddler until juice is extracted. Strain pomegranate juice. Set aside.
- In a tall glass, combine vodka, orange liqueur, pomegranate juice and lime juice.
- Refrigerate mixture or add ice.
- Pour pomegranate mixture into frozen martini glasses with a twist of lime or orange peel.
- Add some pomegranate seeds if desired and serve immediately.
- Kids can enjoy this drink, of course without the alcohol, instead add simple syrup.
- Start with 6 tablespoons of vodka for a weaker drink or add more than 8 tablespoons for a stronger pomegranate cosmos.