How to Cut Open a Pomegranate Without Making a Mess

The best way to peel a pomegranate doesn't need to be a mystery — or stain your countertop.

Pomegranates are full of contradictions: A little sweet, a little tart, a little juicy, a little crunchy. They're easy to eat but hard to prep. Despite using the ancient fruit, some of us modern humans still haven't yet mastered the art of opening the peel to reveal those little red pearls inside.

Cutting a pomegranate in half is messy, ineffective, and doesn't do justice to the natural beauty held within each fruit. Perhaps that's why a viral video showing how forehead-smackingly simple it is to cut open a pomegranate left us picking our jaws up off the floor and questioning everything we thought we knew. Even Padma Lakshmi was impressed.

In the video posted by the account @engineeringvids, an unidentified person with a knife adeptly cuts a square into the blossom end of the fruit, just deep enough to peel away the outer shell. Then the blade is run down the sides of the fruit following the natural membranes that separate each pod of seeds. A little finessing with fingers and thumbs reveals pomegranate wedges ready to be harvested. (Why this person doesn't actually, you know, pick the pomegranate off of the tree remains unclear.)

But we couldn't let this moment pass by without tipping our hats to the experts among us who have been preaching the good word about segmenting your pomegranates with a few well-placed knife scores. Food & Wine culinary director at large Justin Chapple has a video detailing a very similar technique (seen at the top of this article) in which he opts to lop off the entire top of the pomegranate before following the same steps thereafter.

Not only that, if you're looking to become a pomegranate Padawan, Chapple also has a video on how to juice the fruit. And if you want to go really rustic, you can follow Jacques Pépin's method: Stab it with a fork and just rip the whole thing apart with your bare hands. Hey, whatever works.

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