Pomegranate seeds add such a festive touch to all kinds of winter dishes, but they can be a real pain to work with because their juice stains your fingers and everything else it comes in touch with—and it’s virtually impossible to break open a pomegranate without popping a few seeds. In this video, you’ll learn a great method for getting at the seeds without making a mess. The secret is to take it under water.
Start out by cutting the crown off the pomegranate, which exposes a few seeds at the top. Next, lightly score the pomegranate from the stem end to the crown end, a few places around the fruit. Cut all the way through the skin to the white pith below, but don’t cut so deep as to cut the pomegranate into wedges.
Now plunge the pomegranate into a large bowl of water, and let it soak for about 5 minutes. Working under the water, break the fruit into several large sections, and start freeing the seeds from the membranes—you can see how underwater, you can dig out all the seeds without staining your fingers.
The other great thing about this technique is that all those tiny bits of white membrane that would normally cling to the seeds in this case just float to the surface of the water. When you’ve separated all the seeds, just skim away the bits of membrane. Then you can drain the seeds in a colander, and they’re ready to go.