Homemade Grenadine

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Grenadine is a thick, fruity syrup used in cocktails and punches for its sweet flavor and bright red color. There are a number of recipes for Grenadine floating around; but usually the base is pomegranate juice since the name Grenadine come from the French word for pomegranate – grenade. I have seen ones, though, that use cherry juice for a base. One can start with fresh pomegranate juice or bottled. (I use POM.) Some recipes use less sugar. Some use orange flower water instead of citrus juices or zest. Some just have orange, some just lemon. Most – no cinnamon. You get the idea: you can play around with the recipe a bit. Enjoy!

Grenadine

3 1/2 c. pomegranate juice

juice of 2 – 3 lg. lemons

zest of 2 lg. lemons*

juice of 1 orange or blood orange

zest of 1 orange or blood orange*

3 1/2 c. granulated sugar

cinnamon stick, optional

3/4 oz. 151-proof rum**

Add all of the ingredients, except the rum, to a 3- or 4-quart pot. Stir. Bring to a simmer. Reduce heat and cook for about 25 minutes or until thick and syrupy and the liquid is reduced by about one third.

Allow to cool. Strain the syrup and discard the peels and cinnamon stick. If desired, stir in the rum – but then remember that you can’t use this in children’s drinks or in mocktails. (I usually divide syrup into two equal portions, add half the rum to one batch but not to the other, and then make sure that I label which is which when I bottle them.) Pour into clean glass bottles and store Grenadine in the refrigerator.

• Using a sharp paring knife, cut strips of zest from the citrus fruits being sure to leave behind the white pith.

** Grenadine can be made up to 2 weeks ahead if one doesn’t add the rum, or up to about 2 months ahead if one does add the rum.

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