First of all, thanks to POM Wonderful for selecting me to be one of the 100 hosts of POM dinner party. They were generous enough to send me two huge crates of pomegranates, a cutting board, a funny apron, free POM Wonderful juice coupons and gift bags for my guests to make my party a success.
Pomegranate is such a wonderful sweet-tart fruit, packed with anti-oxidants. The arils (or more commonly seeds) can brighten up a salad or 'zing -up' a sauce or just be a simple great snack. These fruits have been incorporated in sweet and savory dishes in India for ages. Dried and ground pomegranate seeds, called anardana is used as a spice to make curries tangy.
Now that I'm done with the initial explanation and history, lets jump in and PARTY!!!!
When I received my 'POM package', I went 'Yippee'... The package was big! Really big!!
Now, It is time to get to work... The first step was to decide the menu and I themed it around Indian flavors.
I sent out evites to my guests stating the date and time of the party. Nitin, Priya, Radhika and Siva confirmed. Unfortunately, Smita, Neel and Sanvi could not make it :(
Then, we went about designing the decor. I searched online and also drew inspiration from POM Wonderful Decorations. Thanks to Murali (my hubby) who helped me shop and set up the displays. Our POM decor included 'The Lone Pome', 'A POM in a Cup', 'The Fall Pyramid' and the star of the night 'The POM fountain'. Read more about our decor story here.
|Our POM decor|
I started cooking for the party from the previous day. I wanted to finish all that can be done earlier (like granita, sorbet etc.), than toil till the end, on the party day (which I ended up doing anyways!!). I opened about 18 - 20 pomegranates over a period of two days... Yes!!! I did.
I pulled out my measuring cups... All along my little one, Srihari, was watching me work, and he decided to make mama some flowers with measuring cups and spoons. He came to me and said 'You like flower? Here you go amma.' and gave these to me!! Isn't he a sweetheart?
|Flowers from my son!!!|
After hours of cooking, the food was ready, just before it was time for the guests to arrive.
Welcome Drink: Pomegranate Juice-Shake
Appetizer/ Snack: Pomegranate Bhel.
Salad: Couscous - Black bean - Pomegranate salad
Main Course 1: Oatmeal crusted Veggie Masala Cutlet served with Pomegranate Chutney and POMyo! sauce.
Main Course 2: Yogurt Rice with Pomegranates
Dessert: Pomegranate Granita and Parfait
The guests arrived one by one. I had the dinner set up buffet style and we chatted along as we enjoyed our food.
Now comes my demo, on how to open a pomegranate. Murali shot and re-shot this video until it was okay. Srihari (patiently) helped me with the presentation. It goes without saying, that my techie hubby did all the editing and production.
Then we played a game of 'Passing the Pomegranate'. We (except me - I was the moderator) pass a pomegranate around while music plays. Whoever is holding it, when the music stops, is the victim. They need to 'perform' whatever the group wants them to and then leave the game. The person left out finally would win a grand prize...
Radhika was out first and had to dance. Then it was Priya who mimicked her husband Nitin. When it was Nitin's turn to 'perform', he told us one of his signature jokes. Next Murali was out and he had to propose to me all over again... Finally, the winner Siva had to relate his most recent "argument" with his newly-wed wife Radhika. He received a coupon for a free bottle of POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice as his 'grand' prize.
Then we had our dessert and said goodbyes, after an evening of enjoyment. The guests went home with the goody bags sent by POM Wonderful. I added a couple of pomegranates in each bag to let the guests try their hand in opening it.
|My family and our guests with POM goody bags|
The fun did not end there for me... My son and I did some fun POM crafts rest of the week.
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