The lead-up to the holidays is always a fun time to go grocery shopping.
So many treats on the store shelves! So much candy and chocolate and fancy cheese and fancier cheese and weird snacking meats and nuts in the shell and...
Funny thing though, this is also the time of year where you start seeing slightly more exotic fruit on offer in the produce department. Things that are coming in season halfway around the world, like the humble but always delightful clementine (or mandarin orange, depending on where you live). All of a sudden you can get 4lbs of easy-to-peel balls of orange happiness, and who doesn't love one (or two) of these sweet little bundles in their lunchbox?
This time of year you also tend to see deep discounts on pomegranates. Now, I love pomegranates, but I've spent years trying to decide if the game is worth the candle; to wit, if it is worth my time and energy to sit there painstakingly picking the seeds out from the membrane.
Then I saw this video, and I thought if this works, it will change everything:
GUYS, IT WORKS.
In mere minutes (fun ones, too - spanking a pomegranate is hilarious for some reason) I had a big bowl of tasty little nuggets of sweetness. The kids loved them. My husband did, too. And because I didn't have to pick out each individual seed with a stickpin (yes, that is one suggested method) or roll it around in a bowl of water for a thousand years (the most commonly-seen method) I didn't mind sharing.
They are nice in lunches as part of a fruit salad with some slices of clementine / mandarin and some grapes - also an item usually marked down in the run-up to Christmas. They're packed with fibre and are one of the prettiest foods going.
Pomegranate = WIN.
We also tried persimmons this week - another fruit that tends to go on sale this time of year. They're still pretty pricey, but I was feeling chuffed from my success with the pomegranates so I figured I'd give it a go.
You eat a persimmon like an apple; just take a bite. I sliced mine first because I was sharing it and the peel is much thicker than an apple, so I'd do that. The flesh is very smooth and with a creamy texture; the taste is sort of reminiscent of an apple and a pumpkin together, but sweeter. My suddenly-very-picky five year old loved it, as did my two year old; my eight year old said it was "pretty nice" but declined to take any in his lunch. Two out of three? I'll take it.
Persimmon = PARTIAL VICTORY
Next time you're in the grocery store, give some thought to trying one of the "holiday fruits". Slip some into your kids' lunches and see how it goes. You may start a new tradition (and trick your kids into eating some extra vitamins while you're at it.)