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Thanksgiving Thirst Quencher

Festive Pomegranate Spritzers

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Thanksgiving is all about the food but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t put some serious thought into the drinks you’re going to serve on the big day. My advice when it comes to making gorgeous and flavorful beverages at home is simple. Use good quality ingredients and seasonal favorites. We’ve all seen apple, pumpkin and cranberry-inspired libations around this time of year but trying something new is the perfect way to get everyone’s attention. Pomegranates are at their peak right now, so why not stir things up on Thanksgiving with this beautiful pomegranate spritzer?

Todd Porter and Diane Cu of the food and photography blog, White on Rice Couple are lucky enough to have their own pomegranate tree in their garden. If you haven’t gotten around to planting yours yet, don’t worry. These days, pomegranates are readily available at most supermarkets and fruit stands. When shopping for pomegranates, choose ones that are large, heavy and bright in color. You don’t want any blemishes, cracks or wrinkles in the skin, which should be shiny, not dull.

Extracting the actual fruit from the pomegranate can be a bit messy and time consuming, but don’t let that scare you. You should definitely wear something you don’t care about, as pomegranate juice stains–badly. There are two ways you can go about this process. A lot of people like to cut the pomegranate in half and whack the back of it with a wooden spoon, cut side facing down into a bowl, so that the individual seeds fall into the bowl. This is not my favorite method, (sorry Nigella!) because the juice tends to spray out and always ends up on the counter, walls and anything else that’s white or wooden in the immediate area. 

I prefer the cut and pry method, in which you use your fingers to pull the ruby-red seeds away from the membranes. I might be biased, as this is the way my grandfather once taught me how to clean a pomegranate. Even so, this has always been my method of choice and Simply Recipes has a very detailed article on just how to cut and de-seed one of these beauties. Trust me, it’s worth it.

Your guests will love this spritzer and kids will be excited to try what the adults are drinking. Leave a bottle of good vodka or gin–or both–and a jigger next to the pitcher, just in case one of the big kids wants to add a little fire to their fruit fizz. Drink up!

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