Persimmon Majic

November 10, 2009

Jap.Persimmon

Hachiya Persimmon

Three weeks ago a the farmers market, my husband bought a persimmon from little Asian lady who usually sells raisins. She told him that the fuyu are for eating when they are still crisp (they are non-astringent), but the Hachiya persimmon should be ripened for 3 weeks before its eaten. Three weeks?! What kind of fruit lasts 3 weeks without getting infested with flies!? The Hachiya persimmon, that’s what.

The next week, we went by her booth again. “But, how will we know its ready?”  We asked again.  “Soft like cotton.”  Said the wise farmer.  Soft like cotton…I imagine fuzz, which looks like a rotten peach to me.   After week two in the window sill, it did start to attract fruit flies. We banished it to a paper bag and put it in the back of the pantry. Last night, we pulled it out, the bag was wet, we dumped it in a bowl. The skin slipped right off, and left in the bowl was persimmon jam.

persimmon puree

Persimmon Puree

The center was identifiable and a bit stringy, but the fruit had just mushed into itself. I expected it to taste fermented, but it was not. It was sweet and cinnamony, like it had been stewed with pumpkin spice. I took the hand blender to it to blend up the center and put it in a jar. This morning, I ate it on toast. Fabulous! Nature’s no-cook  jelly!

I realize that by even writing this, I am revealing, that I am not Asian.  We have since learned that this is common knowledge in Asian culture.  Thank you, East Bay.

Fuyu_persimmon

Fuyu Persimmon

Fuyu Persimmon:
I like to dice this persimmon when it’s still firm, toss with fresh mint, olive oil, a dash of sweet balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper.  Raisins and walnuts add good texture, too.  It’s great as a chutney.

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3 Responses to “Persimmon Majic”

  1. mom said

    That is soo cool! I will begin my hunt for this variety at world market type stores. I have to have this new found jam for a science experiment for my kindergartners. We are chronicaling the life expectancy of a jackolatern and “pumpkin-jack” is looking preety gross. But we won’t eat him. love ya, mom

    • betsyj said

      Good luck! You may have to hunt in back yards. I’m not sure if they travel well, so they may not be stocked in grocery stores. Perhaps Fresh Market in Columbia?

    • betsyj said

      Fun! I’m not sure they’ll be easy to find. They have a thin skin so don’t travel so well. You may have to start hunting back yards, or check Fresh Market in Columbia. In the mean time, see if you can plant a tree in the school garden! Then you could have your whole class make Persimmon Jam for Thanksgiving or Christmas!

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