John Reilly of The Culinary Institute of America explains that removing the seeds of a pomegranate begins even before you cut into the fruit. First you want to roll the pomegranate on the counter and squeeze it slightly to break up the inner membrane, which will help the seeds detach once you cut into it. Don't be too aggressive, however, or you'll crush the seeds inside and end up with juice. After rolling the fruit, he cuts it in half down the middle, then uses a spoon to scoop out the seeds. He then uses his fingers to separate the seeds from the membrane, putting cleaned seeds in a bowl.
I'm Chef John Reilly from the Culinary Institute of America, and I'm going to show you this kitchen basic: how to deseed a pomegranate.
What we're going to do to our pomegranate is give it a little squeeze, and even pound it just a little bit. Then we're going to roll it - and you can actually hear it break up, some of that membrane that's inside. We don't want to go too far with this, though, or we'll start making pomegranate juice out of it.
We'll use a nice chef's knife and cut right across the equator of our pomegranate, and you see the juice come out already - oh, that's just beautiful, look at that!
The seeds are what's edible; the membrane and the outside of the pomegranate are not edible. Now we're going to take a spoon to our pomegranate and pop out the remaining seeds. Get your shell nice and clean; remove all your seeds. Now we're going to pick through and clean them, separating the seeds from the membrane. This takes a little bit of time - but as you can see, a lot of the membrane is broken up already, and we've got a lot of good seed that's left inside.
Now we've separated the seeds from the membrane, and the pomegranate is ready to be enjoyed.