Beman calls pomegranate molasses a "gift from God", and he uses his recipe for Rob-e anar for medicine as well as cooking. For him, the pomegranate symbolises his culture and is a constant reminder of his family. He was astonished to find them growing here in Australia, but they have been for more than a century, thanks to Afghan cameleers.
- 5 cups very ripe pomegranate seeds
- 110 g (½ cup) sugar, to taste
- 2 tbsp lemon juice, to taste
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Place the pomegranate seeds in a large saucepan and cover with water.
Bring to the boil and simmer for 1 hour. Strain the mixture through a sieve, pressing with the back of a spoon. Return the juice to a clean pan, adding the sugar and lemon juice. Simmer for a further 30 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent burning.
To make a syrup, continue simmering and stirring until you have reached the thickness you desire. You might need to pass it through a sieve.
Remove from heat, cool and store in the fridge.
The syrup is very versatile. Try adding it to sparkling mineral water, lemonade or using as a cocktail mixer. It also works well drizzled over ice-cream.