Today’s post is the start of a long tale of two Persimmons – two types of Persimmons. Persimmon Australia clearly shows and describes the difference between the two. In particular, I noticed the size difference.
Some years ago I planted the astringent type because I wanted to feast on the gooey nectar of their bodies when ripe. An old photo shows my small tree with its autumn leaves and a current photo shows my much larger tree despite pruning in recent years.
The fruit of my astringent persimmon is not yet ready to pick; I am guessing that some weeks will pass before they can be eaten.
On the other hand, the non-astringent persimmons can now be purchased in our supermarkets.
When I was surprised by friend M announcing she had brought me a gift, I had no idea the weightiness in her large opaque black bag represented a mass of non-astringent persimmons. I peered in and saw the many large glowing fruits. This was exciting; these I had never eaten.
M didn’t know whether these were astrigent or non-astrigent, and I couldn’t tell by looking although they were larger than those growing on my tree. I took the plunge and took a bite. Yes it was crunchy somewhat similar to an apple. Yes it was flavoursome and very edible. And thankfully it didn’t have the unpleasantness that the astringent persimmon can have if eaten before truly maturely mushy. These were non-astringgent persimmons. I was delighted. What a superb gift.
M, as a blog follower, urged me to write up recipes or ideas how to use these non-astringent fruits other than eating them like an apple skin and all.
I brought them inside, pondered a while and then started to make a list of possible uses for this pile of non-astringent persimmons. Over the coming days I planned to investigate at least some of the options.
Maybe I can:
- Make jam
- Make chutney
- Make a sweet sauce(for over ice cream) and a savoury sauce (for over meats etc)
- Make a persimmon crumble with a toasty oatmeal top
- Pickle them
- Finely chop persimmon and fresh ginger and mix together for use as an accompaniment to a hot rice and savoury meal
- Dry them for cupboard storage
- Stew them for freezer storage
- Bake them
- Use as a sugar substitute by mashing into a cake mixture
- Make some form of bliss balls with persimmon and crushed fresh nuts (eg walnuts)
- Make savoury patties for roasting or shallow frying before serving with a crisp salad, and maybe a savoury persimmon sauce
- Julienne their raw bodies into a crisp green salad of fresh produce such as celery, parsley, asparagus and shredded cos lettuce
- Cube and toss into a vegetable stir fry (add meat, fowl or fish if you eat these)
- Is there something interesting that can be done with alcohol – with vodka, gin, vermouth, ouzo, Bundaberg rum, or some other spirited liquid? Would sparkling wine be improved with a slice or two of non-astringent persimmon?
- Online I found a recipe for Persimmon Risotto with pancetta and goat cheese. You can read more here (https://en.julskitchen.com/seasonal/winter/recipes-with-persimmons). I don’t eat meat or cheese so will not be recreating this recipe. On the same site you will see a recipe for a Persimmon, apple and radicchio salad (I may try making this but radicchio doesn’t really do it for me), another for Cocoa crostata with a persimmon and hazelnut filling (I don’t eat dairy so this one is out for me – are there any experimenters reading who will give this a try?). The final recipe on this site is for a Persimmon and hazelnut mousse (again the use of dairy product means this is not for vegan me). If anyone does make up any of these recipes, can you please send photos and descriptions to me at email@example.com. I feel sure many readers will be interested to hear what you discovered; what your taste buds discovered. At the end of this site’s page is a list of other ideas which include cakes, breads, smoothies and more. I hope to make the suggested Italian recipe with sliced persimmons and fennel, dried figs, celery, parsley, lemon and oil. Mmm – I can already feel that flavour combination in my mouth with the sweet versus the sour, and then the texture changes of creaminess versus crunch.
Oh M – did you realise what you have started here? Please thank C for the persimmons and offer her this blog post (and the subsequent ones) so she can be sure to use and never waste her fruits.