HOW TO SEED A POMEGRANATE

Pomegranate seeds add color, sweetness and texture to any recipe. If it is grown in the U.S., the fruit usually begins to appear in produce sections in the early months of winter. 

I didn't learn this technique as an apprentice, but as a chef. It was taught to me by a Moroccan waiter who worked at Restaurant Gordon, where I was the chef, in Chicago. It struck me as appropriate that a North African would pass on this tip, since pomegranates are an important and common ingredient in their cuisine. 

First, a warning: pomegranate juice stains are tough to remove.  Wear an apron and roll up your sleeves before you begin.  Some of the prep cooks who cleaned pomegranates by the case in my kitchens would make a hole for their heads in the bottom of a clean garbage bag, creating a pomegranate-proof jacket that would be splattered with juice when the case was empty