Pomegranate juice infused with aromatic spices, poured over Crab cakes….
Without any further pondering, I would say, pomegranate is the glamorous and the gem among the fruits. The vibrant glossy red colored seeds can be easily mistaken for the gemstone ruby. I adore this fruit like anything and when I have this fruit I make sure to munch it with style, after all I am chewing the ultimate beauty. My acquaintance with this fruit started when I was a kid and the pomegranate tree at my grandparents had made it even more stronger. Whenever I visited my grandparents, I made sure to examine the tree for any ripe fruit. The joy of plucking the fruit from the tree and devouring it right away standing under the shadow of the tree, cannot be put in words, it was mind-boggling and the best way of having this fruit. Besides eating the fruit as such and making milkshakes with it, I had never looked at this fruit as an ingredient for making savory dishes. I must say I was so much mesmerized by the beauty of this fruit and this might have stopped me from trying anything else with this and just eating the fruit.
Luckily, I came across the POM wonderful pomegranate 2009 contest in food buzz, to participate in the contest, I have to submit an original recipe with POM wonderful 100% pomegranate juice. As soon as I read about this contest, I felt the adrenaline rush to participate in this contest, as I love POM wonderful and all their products, also this is the chance to be creative and make something out of pomegranate juice. As I have never cooked anything with pomegranate juice before, first thing I had to do was a little research about how it could be used in cooking. I was overwhelmed to see the numerous pomegranate recipes posted online, and this put me in embarrassment for not cooking with it before. Since I have to post an original recipe, I obviously had to be creative and had to think out of the box. After few days of experimentation in my kitchen I came up with a recipe with the POM pomegranate juice. My goal was to keep it simple yet fancy.
I easily figured out that the sweet and the tangy flavor of the pomegranate juice made it a flexible ingredient for cooking savory dishes. I tried to infuse aromatic spices into the pomegranate juice and added a hint of fish sauce and Tabasco sauce to make the flavor stronger and deeper. Thickened the infused aromatic juice with cornstarch and made it into a sauce constituency. This sauce was served over crab cakes. I had a real quick recipe for making crab cakes. Poured the sauce over the crab cakes. The aromatic, spicy pomegranate sauce enhanced the overall taste of the crab cakes immensely.
Here is the step by step instructions of making the Pomegranate sauce and the Crab Cakes.
Sauce: 5 minutes
Crab cakes: less than 15 minutes
Yields, Crab cakes- 6
For making the Sauce:
- POM wonderful, 100% pomegranate juice- 1 cup
- Freshly grated ginger-1/2 tsp
- Star Anise seed -2
- Lemon zest-1tsp
- Cornstarch- 1/2 tsp dissolved in little cold water
- Fish sauce- 1 tsp
- Tabasco hot sauce- 3-4 drops
- In a sauce pan, add the pomegranate juice along with ginger, star anise seed, lemon zest.
- Boil and simmer it for 2 minutes to infuse the flavor.
- Strain it to discard the spices.
- Return the aromatic juice back into the sauce pan, add fish sauce and Tabasco and give it a stir.
- Finally add the cornstarch dissolved in little cold water and keep stirring until the sauce thickens.
- Remove from the heat and pour the sauce into a serving bowl and keep aside.
For making Crab cakes:
- Crab meat shredded, use fresh or canned-12 oz
- Lemon zest- 1 tsp
- Scallions chopped-1tbsp
- Plain Bread crumbs- 1/2 cup
- Ground black pepper-1/2 tsp
- Butter- 1tbsp
- Olive oil or Vegetable oil- 2 tbsp
- In a medium bowl, combine the crab meat, lemon zest, scallions, bread crumbs and ground pepper until evenly incorporated with spoon and keep aside. Don’t over mix the meat.
- Make medium sized balls out of the mixture and flatten the balls in between the palm of your hands.
- In a wide skillet, add butter and oil, let the oil gets hot. keep the flame in medium.
- Place the crab cakes onto the butter/oil.
- Brown both the sides for few minutes, until it is cooked through.
- Transfer it on the serving plate and pour the Pomegranate sauce over the crab cake.
- Enjoy the Crab cakes with the sauce.