Rachel Laudan

Agua Fresca 15: Agua de Granada (Pomegranate Water)

I’ve been neglecting aguas frescas recently. But last week the garden yielded a bumper crop of pomegranates (granadas). The insects are arriving for their share. Snakes in every Eden.

If you’ve ever tackled a pomegranate, with its tough outer skin and its white membrane that cocoons each individual seed, you know that it’s not the easiest of fruits to deal with. But if all you want is juice, and if you are lucky enough to have a hand operated Mexican orange juice squeezer, it’s just dandy for pomegranate juice. Here’s Emilia cutting up the pomegranates and squeezing them.

I freeze lots of the juice to use in cooking or for making aguas in the dead of winter. But some I pour into a pitcher, add three or four times the amount of water and enough sugar to take the edge off the tartness. The result is what my husband calls, with deadly accuracy, your fluorescent drink. It’s also one of the loveliest in color and in taste. I could drink it all year long.

In the States you can get bottled pomegranate juice. You can get it in Costco in Mexico too. Dilute this. It’s not quite so lovely, the flavor does not have the immediacy, but it’s cheap, available year round, and rouses haunting echoes of the real thing.

And pomegranates jump start us into the Eurasian origins of agua fresca. More tomorrow.

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4 thoughts on “Agua Fresca 15: Agua de Granada (Pomegranate Water)

  1. Adam Balic

    Your pomegrante look to have a much higher pith to seed ratio then I am use to. Different varieties of pomegrantes have very different levels or sugar/acid, are these more acid or sweet?

  2. Dianabuja

    oh, THANKS Rachel! Just as I was opening your page, I was putting in a Google search as to how many (100’s) of ways to use fresh pomegranate, as we have a tree that’s just gone ripe!

    Will let you know how the drink turns out.

  3. Rachel Laudan

    Adam, mine’s simply not a particularly good pomegranate. There’s no way of knowing what variety you are buying in a Mexican nursery. Even so, I’m happy to have it.

    Rajagopal, I love straight juice too. I just can’t drink in the quantities that I can the agua fresca. One is for sipping, the other for downing. Mexicans also use the blender. I prefer the juicer as it seems to produce less tannin. I love the term pearls.

    Diana, if you’re like me almost any way of using pomegranates is good.

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