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Question about pomegranate molasses and muhammara

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I bought some pomegranate molasses from a Middle Eastern shop the other day. The woman at the store told me she had 2 kinds and that one was sweeter than the other. She suggested I buy the more tart one for cooking which I thought made sense as I could always add honey or other sweetener, if needed. I made a bulgur with pomegranate molasses last night (NYT adaptation of a Claudia Roden recipe) last night and it was just okay. So I wanted to double check, since I've never seen recipes distinguish, which kind of pomegranate molasses do you use?

Also, I was going to try the muhammara (red pepper-pomegranate molasses and walnut dip) that Miss Claudy posted a while back. I have the list of ingredients but no instructions - am I meant to roast the peppers or walnuts first or do I just throw everything into a cuisinart as is?

Thanks!!

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  1. I didn't know there were 2 kinds of pom. molasses. Is the ingredient list different? I have Cortas brand which is intensely tart-sweet. When I'm following a recipe I haven't had to increase the amount yet. I've used mine exclusively for savory cooking - dips, marinades, salad dressings.

    I don't know what version of muhammara you have. I use Paula Wolfert's recipe. It calls for roasted red peppers and toasted nuts.

    1. Roast the peppers until charred all over. (I just put them on a cookie sheet right under the broiler [top rack] and turn them as each side gets charred.)
      Lightly roast nuts too.
      Place them in a paper bag for 10 minutes. Peel, stem and seed them, then chop coarsely.
      Place everything in the food processor and process until quite smooth. Taste for salt.

      I didn't know there were different types of pom. molasses...i know there is a pomegranate paste in addition to the molasses.

      1. what brand of pom molasses did you wind up buying, that was less sweet?

        1. I bought Cedar brand - the actual bottle says "concentrated pomegranate juice" but she said it was pomegranate molasses - is that right? The sweeter one was from Iran, can't recall the brand name, but interestingly, I didn't see sugar or any obvious sweetener on the ingredient list for that one. Hmmm. Thanks for the info on the muhammara.

          4 Replies
          1. re: peppermint pate

            I made the same Claudia Roden recipe, a little tweaked, with the pom molasses I bought, which was the only one available at Sahadi's in Brooklyn. Mine is pretty sweet and tart, and I thought the bulgur salad was delicious. There's no added sweetener in mine either, though I can't remember the brand name. Maybe try again with a different molasses?

            The full Paula Wolfert recipe can also be found at
            http://www.leitesculinaria.com/recipe...

            1. re: AppleSister

              This link gives the Paula Wolfert recipe I use, except I don't use wheat crackers, I use wheat bread. It makes a wonderful muhammara.

              1. re: AppleSister

                Thanks. I added a bit of honey and tahini to the recipe as I didn't feel it had enough flavour "oomph". To be fair, I didn't have any allspice or ground coriander so I crushed some coriander seeds but those have a different flavour. I will try it again. Just to clarify, does concentrated pomegranate juice = pomegranate molasses?

                1. re: peppermint pate

                  to the best of my knowledge the two are the same. Pomegranate molasses is just highly reduced pomegranate juice.