Since we got back from our gorgefest in NYC in November, I switched to a smoothie for breakfast instead of cereal. And I guess it’s a habit now because I’m still doing it. That’s a couple more fruit servings a day than I was getting before. Yay me!
The folks at POM Wonderful offered to send me some more pomegranate juice. Thinking of my morning smoothies I said “hell yeah, gimme!” Or something similar. I may have tried one smoothie when they sent a past batch of juice, but now I have that whole thing down and can get into it more.
1/4 cup frozen blueberries or strawberries
1/2 tsp chia seeds
1 scoop Sun Warrior rice protein powder, natural
1 tsp agave nectar
1/2 cup POM 100% pomegranate juice
3/4 cup unsweetened vanilla rice milk
Throw into a blender. Blend. Drink.
The blueberry variation was the first I tried. Mainly because I’m lazy. This is my normal go to smoothie with some pomegranate juice subbed for some of the rice milk. The chia seeds are a fairly recent addition. They seem to give it that little extra needed to carry me through to lunch without wanting to attack snacks. Too much. While this version was perfectly tasty, trading the blueberries for strawberries was even better. The pomegranate and strawberries seem to boost the flavor of each. Gives you an extra fruity punch.
Since I haven’t been cooking much lately, the rest of the juice will probably end up in smoothies. I’m considering substituting pineapple for the berries. Hopefully that won’t be gross.
You know, apparently I’m just not a big juice drinker. POM sent me two of their new juice blends to try a couple of weeks ago at least and I just today got to the second one. It’s not that I don’t like juice. I’m just more of a fruit eater than drinker.
Anyway, first up was the POM Nectarine. A nice blend. The nectarine did a good job of standing up to the assertive pomegranate. The POM Kiwi was much more subtle and it was mostly pomegranate that came through. I found both juices easier for me to drink than straight pomegranate but they were still a bit strong for me. Maybe a little apple juice mixed in would make it more palatable for me. I did drink a full serving of each but there was no way I could drink more than that. I guess that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
Click through the links to see nutritional information, etc. I know POM has left a bad taste (ha, I’m funny!) in some vegan’s mouths because of their past animal testing. They did stop back in 2007 which is the only reason I agreed to try their products. Oh, and this is not a paid blog post. POM has sent me samples of some of their products but that’s the extent of the schwag I’ve received.
On a side note, I love how Whole Foods got all up in arms and was threatening to pull POM off their shelves over animal testing when they sell animal products. Hello?
When someone emails me and says “hey, can we send you free stuff?” my answer tends to be “hells yeah!” This never happens of course. Except for the POM Wonderful people. They sent me some juice a while back that I used in various ways. This time they wanted to send me POM teas. Sure!
Four teas arrived: Pomegranate Lychee Green, Pomegranate Hibiscus Green, Pomegranate Wildberry White and Pomegranate Blackberry Tea. I usually drink my tea unsweetened or lightly sweetened so I gravitated towards the two light teas, the hibiscus and wildberry. I liked the sweetness level of those but my overall favorite was the lychee. Since lychees are sort of a perfumed, floral experience, no one will be surprised by this given my love of rosewater, lavender, etc. in food. I can see myself craving that one from time to time. The non-light teas weren’t hideously sweet. I just don’t need as much sugar as they provide. And to me 140 calories is a lot to blow on a beverage. Yeah, the bottle is supposed to be two servings. But seriously, who drinks half?
The quest to use up the POM Wonderful pomegranate juice continues! For our vegan potluck today, I made the Persephone Cupcake recipe I found while googling around. I made the recipe as written except I substituted soy yogurt & milk for the coconut yogurt and almond milk and I must say it needs some work. I forgot that I usually don’t like the results when using yogurt in a baked good. The texture seems a little gummy. But the flavor is lovely.
The frosting also had issues. The pomegranate juice will not stay incorporated with the rest of the ingredients. Whip all you want, it’ll look all fluffy and mixed, then slowly the pomegranate juice seeps out. And it does appear to be just the pomegranate juice, not the soy milk. Of course, I wouldn’t be able to tell if the rose water seeped out since it’s clear. I’m sure there’s some chemical reason for this. Frosting still tastes okay, but looks funky. Also, to avoid an unappetizing color, I ended up using a drop or two of food coloring like I did with the Pomegranate Bars. All in all, I loved the flavor mix here and I’ll definitely be playing with it. I think I’ll start from scratch though and not bother trying to salvage this recipe.
Last night I got experimental with the POM Wonderful pomegranate juice. Instead of stocking up at the liquor store and mixin’ and drinkin’ until I ended up with my arms wrapped around the toilet, I decided to try something a little safer. Pomegranate Bars. You know, like lemon bars, but pomegranate. I also tossed in some orange zest to make it interesting.
I was a little concerned when I tasted the filling. The pomegranate wasn’t coming through as much as I’d like. Also, the mixture ended up a kind of muddy greyish pink. So I added a little food coloring. The finished bar actually tasted better than I thought it would come out. But it still needs work. The bars would be awesome if some pomegranate seeds were stirred in just before pouring the filling into the bars. It would be pretty and give an interesting texture to them. To get more intense pomegranate flavor, next time I would reduce the pomegranate juice a little over heat to concentrate it. Another possibility is to mix it with lemon or lime juice to give it more of a tart flavor.