Hello my lovelies – the link to all the produce in the boxes is here.
Perhaps, like me, some of you were a little discombobulated by the sight of persimmons in your box this week. I was in mortal fear, having had a brush with them many years ago that left a peculiar expression on my face for half and hour and an indelible impression on my brain for significantly longer. I have decided to confront that memory and drive that particular demon from my life today – and, in the process, shed some light on a somewhat obscure fruit.
Persimmons come in two varieties – astringent or non-astringent. The astringent variety can only be eaten once they are fully ripe, soft and almost mushy and many people prefer these. However, until fully ripe they contain a great deal of tannin – more than you can believe from such a demure looking fruit, hence my experience mentioned above. They are high in fibre and also contain Vitamin C and Beta-Carotene.
We have been provided with the non-astringent variety and are therefore safe from any severe face puckering injuries. Like the former variety, these can be eaten when fully ripe and soft. When ripe the skins are very soft and can be eaten as well, or Maggie Beer (in “Maggie’s Harvest”) recommends cutting the tops off and scooping out the fruit with a spoon. They are equally as good when firm and are a wonderful addition to salads when in this state and are very pretty when cut on the cross-section. They can be eaten fresh, skin or or off although most prefer them peeled, have a delightfully delicate flavour and are ideal for the lunch box.
There is actually a website devoted to the persimmon which has loads of ideas and recipes and is well worth a look.
Maggie has several recipe for them in “Maggie’s Harvest”, but the idea of hers I like the best is really very simple. She suggests making up some of her sour cream pastry and blind baking it in a tart case, spreading it thickly with mascarpone, topping it with chopped up ripe, but still slightly firm persimmons, dusting with castor sugar and giving it a blast under a hot grill.
On a cold autumn evening that is looking pretty good to me and should be enough to banish those parlous puckered pictures from my mind.[mc4wp_form id="16750"]