In November, here in Mallorca the markets and supermarkets are abundant with local pomegranates. Often a cream and pink colour on the outside, yet bursting inside with ruby red seeds (or arils).
They are truly a superfood, and as they are in season now, they are an excellent immune booster as we move into the winter months. Eating foods in season is so crucial to our health, yet so often forgotten these days.
Pomegranates can simply be sprinkled over meals, juiced or eaten as a snack – beautiful and so nutritious!!
Winter Quinoa Tabbouleh Salad (serves 4)
1.5 cups quinoa
3 cups stock or water
1 tsp turmeric powder
4 medium tomatoes, diced into eighths
1/2 cucumber, slice length-ways, remove seeds and slice
5 large handfuls of fresh, flat-leaf parsley, roughly chopped
1 small handful of fresh mint, roughly chopped
1 small handful of fresh dill, roughly chopped
1 large avocado
1/4 teaspoon of ground allspice
2 tablespoons of flaked or chopped local almonds
2 large handfuls of leaves such as watercress, lamb’s lettuce, rocket
1 cup pomegranate seeds
6 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice, lime juice or apple cider vinegar
2 teaspoons local honey or pomegranate molasses
1 garlic clove, crushed
Drain and rinse the quinoa well, add with turmeric to the stock and cook over a moderate heat for about 10 minutes, remove from the heat, cover and leave it to absorb any remaining water for 10 minutes, then leave to cool.
Meanwhile, dice the tomatoes and cucumber (remove the cucumber seeds by scraping down the middle with a spoon).
Whisk the dressing ingredients in a bowl with a fork or shake together in jam jar.
Make a bed of leaves on your serving plates or bowls.
Combine the warm or cold quinoa, tomatoes, cucumber, half of the pomegranate seeds and herbs with the dressing. Pile the tabbouleh onto the leaves and top with thick slices of avocado and the remaining pomegranate seeds
Dry fry the flaked almonds and ground allspice together for a few minutes on a medium heat until toasted and scatter over the tabbouleh.
Home-Made Pomegranate Molasses (yields 300g)
A Middle-Eastern staple – added to many dishes, mostly made with a lot of sugar, but can be simply made with salt.
4 kg pomegranates
¼ tsp salt
Half the pomegranates and remove seeds, saving all the juice, squeeze all the seeds to extract more juice. Then in a sieve, over a saucepan with the back of a spoon strain the best you can, add the salt to the juice and boil for one hour until thickened like jam consistency, leave to cool and pour into clean jar, it does not need to be refrigerated, can keep for 6 months. This version can be used in recipes for its tanginess.
Pomegranates contain an abundance of powerful antioxidant polyphenols, including ellagitannins, anthocyanins, punicic acid and ellagic acid. They are also an excellent source of the antioxidant vitamin C plus vitamin K, folate, vitamin B6, phosphorus and potassium.
Benefits include: natural aphrodisiac, reduce arthritis and joint pain, fight cancer exerting antitumor effects on various cancer cells, lower blood pressure, fight bacterial infections, stimulate probiotic bacteria, improves heart health and improves memory.
About the author
Suzanne is a Nutritional Therapist trained in London at College of Naturopathic medicine. She has 25 years experience as a chef and recently trained in raw foods, at a gourmet level with Matthew Kenney.
Suzanne’s business is Vital Nutrition which she founded in 2008. She offers private consultancies focusing on diet and lifestyle improvements supporting patients on their journey to optimum health.
Her regular cookery workshops are delicious, fun and educational and her cooking skills are available to private clients, on retreats and for chef training.