I totally loathe this Wake Up One Hour Earlier Nonsense, aka Daylight “Savings” Time, here in most of the US. Back in the years when it fell on a weekend near April Fool’s, I considered it an April Fool’s Joke in very bad taste. (I also remembered the October switch-over back then as a very bad prank on Halloween-trick-or-treaters, who now had to go out in the dark. Though the dates have changed, this is how I remember this stuff. Spring Forward? Nope, I really feeling like I’m springing backwards, which is not a way for remembering anything. I’ve lost an hour that I probably never will ever regain…)
Pick a time. STICK WITH IT! Don’t mess with my bio-rhythms!
Before I get to the Pomegranate Spritzer, I want to put in a plug for Russ Crandall’s upcoming book, Paleo Take Out: Restaurant Favorites Without the Guilt. I’ve volunteered to test drive one of the recipes this week — no, I can’t post the recipe (it’s for a real live BOOK), but if I get good photos, I can certainly post those here. Today I’ve picked up all but two ingredients — but I simply refuse to walk into three grocery stores in one day! And I know the third store has the best quality for price for these ingredients than the other two. I’ll be testing Russ’ Hot and Sour Soup, my litmus test for a good Chinese restaurant. (Honestly, most of the ingredients were already to hand — it was just a few things.)
If you are not familiar with Russ Crandall, he runs the blog, The Domestic Man, and has already published cookbooks. The first is out there in print and in electronic form: The Ancestral Table. The second is strictly an e-book, obtainable from his website, The Safe Starch Cookbook, (which unfortunately got downloaded to my old computer shortly before it died (the computer, not the book, but I will be able to retrieve wanted files soon…) The reason I seriously like his recipes, his blog, and The Ancestral Table — is he’s not afraid to make recipes from around the world, and create them in healthy formats. He posts a new recipe every Tuesday.
And I also picked up ingredients for an Indian riata that will appear soon on my blog here, too. Been wanting to blog about riata for ages, but somehow thought I already had!) You can also expect a few other recipes here very soon: an Indian-inspired goat curry recipe; a roasted lamb shoulder recipe, and a scalloped potato/cabbage/cheese vegetarian recipe.
The other thing is — I’m now creating a Recipe Index page here, which will appear at top along side Home and About, at the top of this blog. Going through the recipes here make me realize how many good standbys I’ve left out, assuming, I think, that I’ve already posted them. This should appear in two or three days. Maybe sooner. Do Enjoy!
Back to the Pomegranate Spritzer:
This is entirely too simple, but I love it two or three times a week.
Pomegranate (Punica granatum) is a high anti-oxidant, as shown by the deep red-purple color of its fruit. It is native to a region extending from current-day Iran to northern India, and was widely cultivated in the Mediterranean from antiquity. It is a pain to open up these fruits, and you certainly don’t want to be wearing white!
However, fruit juices concentrate down a LOT of fruit. It’s said that a regular glass of OJ provides the sugar levels of 6 oranges in several quick gulps. Plus, most OJ is consumed with all the pulp removed.
Growing up, Mom provided hand-juiced orange juice with all the pulp, using a manual juicer. To this day, the only way I like OJ is straight up, with pulp, and undiluted (mimosas non-withstanding). Okay, I have put blood oranges in “blends” I’ve created that have focused on veggies rather than fruits.
I’ve decided orange juice is really not part of my healthy life, per se. But pomegranate…
Pomegranate is sweet and tart, very tart. I find I like diluting it vastly. I can get the anti-oxidants and far less sugar, and to me it tastes very good this way – much more accessible than full strength, and less likely to make a mess so long as I watch how I put that glass down!
The brands of pomegranate juice that I’ve noticed which are good are Pom Wonderful, and Bolthouse Farms. There may be more, but these I can find in my supermarket, and they both seem pretty pure. As always, read labels!
Regards sugar, I don’t need to add it — if you personally do, stay with more wholesome sources. If you like sweet but aren’t supposed to do added sugars, you can try stevia. To me, stevia tastes like what I’d imagine old dirty socks might taste like — perhaps my reaction is something genetic like how some folks think cilantro tastes like soap? But if you think it tastes sweet, Do It!
Prep Time: Assuming the ingredients are chilled — seconds.
Cook Time: Zilch.
Rest Time: Zilch.
Serves one per tumbler.
1 part chilled pomegranate juice (find the stuff that’s pure juice).
3 parts chilled seltzer water (I make my own using a SodaStream, but any source works).
Optional: Sweetener (start with 1/8 teaspoon of either honey or coconut palm sugar, or the equivalent sweetening amount of stevia, if making in a water glass tumbler. Work up, if needed. Since I don’t tolerate the “taste” of stevia, see the link below for a conversion table…)
Make enough to fill one water tumbler per person. Or, make enough to fill a one-liter seltzer bottle — just drink up the one-quarter volume you use, first.
Add any sweetener to the juice, and mix, prior to combining with any seltzer. Personally, I’m fine without adding any, but I’ve come to realize a lot of people might want some.
Stevia to sugar conversion table. I have not tested this as I detest the taste of stevia, but if your genetic heritage or whatever tastes this as sweet, use it.
By the way, if you use the SodaStream, don’t ever spritz up a beverage with your flavor or juice already included — spritz just the water and pour it over your flavor or juice. Real Bad Carbon Dioxide Juju, especially if your juice is something as purple as pomegranate!
Or, as noted, pour off one-quarter of the seltzer (already made, or bought) from the bottle, and add your juice (with or without sweetener) gently.
You know what to do with the ice.