While we’re at the tail end of our cold spring days–or so I hope, I still crave warm, rich flavors. On hot summer days, I often steam spinach and then dress it lightly with lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper, but when I arrive home soaked with rain, I want something more comforting. That’s how spinach ends up married to pomegranate molasses and honey in my kitchen. It’s a light dish, but its flavor is bold and lush.
Pomegranate molasses is a trendy ingredient right now with chefs, but it’s a traditional ingredient in Eastern countries, from Turkey to Iran. I first tried it at the table of my Azeri relatives, and I’ve been in love ever since. In Azerbaijan, a former Soviet republic on the Caspian Sea, this tart condiment is commonly served as a dipping sauce and in numerous vegetable preparations. In the Ukraine of my childhood, where mayonnaise was the most exotic condiment, it seemed like something out of One Thousand and One Nights. But before long it became as ubiquitous in my pantry as mustard.
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