Heather Rockwood is a food science junior and Mustang Daily food columnist.

A new quarter, a new year and a fresh new start. Every year, the same New Year’s resolutions consistently resurface as most important across the nation: losing weight, eating healthier and spending more time with loved ones.

Americans young and old dig down deep into their willpower and commit to these resolutions valiantly — that is, up until about the end of January, when the busyness of life swoops in and swallows these young, innocent resolutions right up. These resolutions seem like reasonable aspirations promising a happier, healthier life, yet most of the nation just can’t find the motivation to continue striving beyond a few weeks, despite the promised reward.

As we begin this new quarter and new year, I will once again ask readers to embark on an adventure. The resolutions we aspire for are so often cut short by the thought of the limitations they may bring and what we must give up or avoid in order to usher in a brighter new year, but in reality, resolutions offer an opportunity to focus on acquiring new experiences and procuring more, not less.

Do not get bogged down in the fear of not sticking with your resolutions or not seeing results. Rather, I implore you to resolve to adventure into what is right in front of you. Invite yourself to experience a journey that relishes in the character and flavor of each new bite. Feasting on in-season produce presents an enticing alternative to banishing foods, and it promises a new year full of vitality and vivacity.

So excited that you don’t know where to begin? I suggest start this week of crashing, adding and swapping classes Wonderfully. The pomegranate cultivar rightfully entitled Wonderful is ripe and waiting in local markets just for you.

Derived from the Latin word for apple, the pomegranate is truly bursting with benefits. Beneath the pink leathery skin of this fruit hides away hundreds of arils, or the little juice sacs famous for staining white shirts. Do not let this scare you off, though. One can easily avoid any stains by simply placing cut wedges of the fruit in water and waiting for the delicious seeds to sink to the bottom.

This exotic fruit originated in Iran and has found its place routinely throughout history in the Bible, the writings of Homer, as well as Greek, Chinese, Persian and Roman lore. Perhaps it holds such esteem throughout history for the same reason it is acknowledged as a “superfood” today — it is loaded with antioxidants including tannins, anthocyanins and ellagic acid, which all play important roles in reducing the risk of heart disease and cancer — not to mention the sweet, yet tart flavor that commands satisfaction remains quite super as well.

By the end of this first week, busyness will most likely take hold of your life and as I stated before, swallow up whole your resolutions — but remember: this year you are embarking on a food adventure without limitations. I say, throw a couple pomegranate seeds on top and ask life “What’s next?”

HINT: This root vegetable is the original Jack O’Lantern.

Pomegranate Guacamole

(Courtesy of pomegranates.org)

Ingredients:

2 large ripe avocados
1/2 large onion, grated
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 fresh chilies, serranos, seeded
2 tablespoons fresh coriander leaves
1 freshly squeezed lime
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon pomegranate juice
3 tablespoons pomegranate seeds

Directions:

Finely chop the onion, garlic, chilies serranos and coriander leaves. Place in bowl and add lime juice and salt, set aside. Peel and pit the avocados and place in a bowl. Mash with fork slowly adding the tablespoon of pomegranate juice. Add onion and garlic mixture and fold together to make a course pulp. Gently fold in pomegranate seeds. Serve with warm tortillas, tostadas or corn chips.

Recipe serves six.

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