Pomegranate molasses is a pantry staple throughout the eastern portion of the Mediterranean. Made by reducing pomegranate juice, this sticky syrup layers astringent, floral, and faintly bitter notes over a sweet-tart, fruity flavor. It can be whisked into vinaigrette, drizzled over vegetables, brushed onto roasted meats, or pureed into dips. Many recipes call for boiling pomegranate juice and a generous amount of sugar (and sometimes lemon juice) in a saucepan. We found that those syrups tasted too jam-like and required at least 20 minutes of cooking. We use only a small amount of sugar and no lemon juice. To speed up evaporation, we use a 12-inch skillet, which offers more surface area.
2 cups pomegranate juice
1/2 teaspoon sugar
Reducing the pomegranate juice at a simmer, rather than at a boil, drives off fewer flavor compounds and results in fresher, more complex flavor.
Bring pomegranate juice, sugar, and salt to simmer in 12-inch skillet over high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring and scraping thickened juice from sides of skillet occasionally, until mixture is thick and syrupy and measures 1/3 cup, 12 to 15 minutes. Let cool slightly before transferring to container. (Syrup can be refrigerated in airtight container for up to 1 month.)
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