Monday, November 11, 2013

Anna Sultana's Mulled Apple Cider l How to Open a Pomegranate Easily

Yes, Ma's Mulled Wine is great for cold winter days.
No, it isn't great to serve vast quantities of mulled wine to little kids.
Especially not in these politically correct, totally 'no physical contact in school' days.
And it's not good for the kiddies to tell the teacher that they love mulled wine.
Trust me.

But the kids do get cold.
And hot chocolate and cocoa do have sugar and caffeine.
The kids are getting enough sugar from the Halloween candy.
And it's not politically correct to react with a bit of a temper.

Fear not, there are hot drinks without caffeine that they can enjoy!
Yes there is some sugar in apple cider.
But you can control the amount.

Pomegranate trivia:
The name pomegranate is from medieval Latin pōmum "apple" and grānātum "seeded".
A pomegranate can have from 200 to about 1400 seeds, which are an excellent source of fiber.  They are a good source of vitamin C and vitamin K. 


Open the pomegranate by scoring it with a knife and breaking it open.
Separate the arils (seed casings) from the peel and internal white pulp membranes. 
Separating the red arils is easier in a bowl of water because the arils sink and the inedible pulp floats. 

Freezing the entire fruit also makes it easier to separate.

Or you can cut the pomegranate in half, score each half of the exterior rind four to six times, hold the pomegranate half over a bowl and smack the rind with a large spoon. The arils should eject from the pomegranate directly into the bowl, leaving only a dozen or more deeply embedded arils to remove.

Clementines are very easy to peel, like a tangerine, and are usually seedless. 
If you can't find clementines, no problem.
Mandarins work just as well.
Or a navel orange.
Just toss the orange/clementine/mandarine seeds if you find any.

If you're serving this to really little kids, strain out the pomegranate seeds.
Use your judgement if they can handle eating the seeds with a spoon.

                        Mulled Apple Cider

Juice and set aside 
1 clementine
1 orange

Slice open 
1 pomegranate
Remove and set aside all the seeds.

In a large saucepan place
4 Cups apple cider
Simmer over low heat for a few minutes.
3 whole cloves
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cinnamon
the citrus juices
the pomegranate seeds
Bring the mixture to a boil.
Reduce the heat and bring the mixture to a simmer. 
Let it simmer for 5 to 8 minutes.

1/3 Cup sugar, more or less

You can serve the cider as it is or strain the cider before serving.
Ladle into cups and serve.

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