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Super Food Power Salad Recipe
Chef V’s Antioxidant Love Salad Recipe

Pomegranate seeds have been used therapeutically for thousands of years and are mentioned numerous times in The Bible. Chef V features them in two delicious, nutrient-dense salad recipes she’ll share. But she also admits to having a love-hate relationship with pomegranates. 

I love adding pomegranate seeds to my salads. These tiny, slightly slimy red (or reddish-white) seeds pack a powerful nutritional punch. I consider pomegranate seeds a superfood. So much so in fact that I have included them in two of my salad recipes in my cookbook, Making Cleansing Easier. And, below, I’ll be sharing both the recipes—”Super Food Power Salad” and “Antioxidant Love Salad.”

But first, let me disclose that I actually have a love/hate relationship with pomegranate. Not the seeds, mind you, but the whole fruit. You see, although I always advocate eating whole foods, pomegranate might just be the exception. For example, I would never recommend to anybody that they drink orange juice (with the exception being if you have type 1 diabetes and your blood sugar level is too low). Instead, eat an orange so you get the fiber from the whole fruit, as well as the lower total sugar content. Pomegranates, though, are a messy business.

Pomegranate Seeds: fruit of choice for a midwife?

Here’s what it takes to get pomegranate seeds out of the shell. First, you have to loosen the seeds. You do this by rolling it. Next, with the dexterity and precision of a brain surgeon, you have to cut delicate, shallow tears in the lining of the shell to tear it. (Or what’s known in the cooking industry as “scoring.” You score the pomegranate around the bulge and tear it into equal halves.

And now here comes the messy part. (Make sure you’re doing this in the sink basin.) You hold both halves over a bowl with the seed-side downward facing. Using a large wooden soon, tap the skin while also giving the fruit a little squeeze so the seeds will be forced from their slimy cocoon. But your work here isn’t done. Next, you have to dip the pomegranate into a bowl of water. This will help you pull apart the sections you’ve scored. And now it’s time to liberate the seeds with your hands. However, you’re still not done. There’s some triage needed. You’ll need to remove the skin that’s floating and rescue the seeds that sink. So get rid of the rind and drain the pomegranate seeds.

Pomegranate Seeds: is it worth it to squeeze them out yourself?

Now do you see why I have a love-hate relationship with pomegranates? And why I make the exception at times to buy the whole fruit? Sure, if I have enough time and want to get my hands dirty, not to mention slimy, I’ll pretend like I’m a midwife bringing newborn pomegranate life into this world. (Not to gross you out before you eat my delicious, healthy salads, but, yeah, it does resemble after birth a bit.) But most of the time, I’ll just buy packaged pomegranate seeds. If you must, judge me for being lazy and environmentally irresponsible (although, to be fair to myself, the plastic and packaging is recyclable) but my mission is to make cleansing easier.

Pomegranate Seed Benefits

Pomegranates were originally cultivated in the Mediterranean. They’re mentioned numerous times in the Old Testament. From Deuteronomy, Numbers, Exodus, Kings, Jeremiah, and even the book of Joel. Pomegranates, or grained apple, as they’re also known, were so valued for their sweetness and nutrition, that people made sure to please God so they’d have ample supply. Because lest they didn’t obey God’s commands, one of God’s judgements, according to the book of Joel, was the withering of the pomegranate tree.

Historically, pomegranates and their seeds were used as an alternative to leather (the Romans tanned pomegranate skins), a remedy for tapeworm as well as a natural dye.

Several thousand years later, people are now value pomegranates for their medicinal properties. Research studies (like this one) conclude that the fruit may prevent or treat high blood pressure; high cholesterol; oxidative stress; high blood sugar, and systemic inflammation in the body (pomegranates can help manage rheumatoid arthritis, for example). Furthermore, the antioxidants in pomegranate may even help kill cancer cells (especially for prostate and skin cancers).

Bonus benefit: the antioxidant properties of pomegranate juice is more than that of red wine and green tea, say the researchers.

Because of their protection against oxidation, pomegranates may help fight signs of aging, both inside and outside of the body; it may prevent hardening of arteries while also improving skin quality.

As for their nutrition, most of the fiber in pomegranates comes from the seeds. The seeds are also high in vitamin C and potassium. Without doubt, it’s really easy to grab a handful or two of pomegranate seeds and sprinkle into a salad. So without further ado, let me share with you my two favorite salads to which I add them. 

Chef V Nutrient Dense Salads Featuring Pomegranate Seeds

Before I share my yummy salad recipes with you, let me give you a little tip about preparing salads. When I feature kale as the main green in the salad, I’ll squeeze fresh lemon juice on it and let it sit a few minutes. The acid in the juice helps to soften and wilt the greens, making them a little tastier. (I think some people are turned off by kale because of the unpalatable texture of it; the lemon juice helps with this.)

Ok, the first salad recipe from my cookbook I’ll share with you is….

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Super Food Power Salad

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(serves 2)

Ingredients:

  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 4 cups chopped green
  • kale or baby kale
  • 1 ripe avocado, diced
  • ½ cup pomegranate seeds
  • ½ cup red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • Raw pine nuts (or other fav)

First, squeeze the lemon juice onto the chopped kale and let it sit a few minutes. Then mash the avocado into the greens. Next, sprinkle with pomegranate seeds, kidney beans, and your favorite nuts, and serve.

Enjoy!

Craving more salad? Here’s the other yummy, filling, nutrient-dense salad with pomegranate seeds….

Chef V’s Antioxidant Love Salad

(serves 2)

Ingredients

  • 1 large organic red chard leaf, washed & chopped
  • 1 cup organic red leaf lettuce or red spinach, washed and chopped
  • 1 tbsp. cold pressed olive oil
  • 1 tbsp. organic balsamic vinegar
  • 1 small raw organic beet, washed, skinned & grated
  • ½ cup organic raspberries
  • 2 small radishes, shaved
  • ¼ cup pomegranate seeds
  • ¼ cup chopped raw walnuts

Directions:

Combine olive oil and vinegar with chard and red leaf lettuce. Divide lettuce on two separate plates. Distribute half the beets, raspberries, radish, pomegranate seeds and chopped walnuts to each salad.

Bon Appétit!