I was sitting in the backseat of my girlfriend’s Camry riding down Highway 101 when Lauren began reminiscing about her time living in Santa Barbara. “We stayed in this cute little cottage down by the beach with a persimmon tree in the backyard. The persimmons in the fall were SO delicious! One time, when I was back there picking one, my gorgeous neighbor came over and…”Jump to Recipe
“What’s a persimmon?” I asked.
All 3 girls turned to look at me like I’d just said, “I’m not drinking this weekend.” Clearly, the persimmon was the least interesting part of the story to everyone but me.
“You’ve seriously never heard of a persimmon?” Lauren was too dumbfounded to be offended by my untimely interruption. When I assured her that I had not, she explained that it was a delicious fall fruit similar to a pear or an apple, yet entirely different. And that I absolutely had to have one. Given that it was summer, however, I’d have to wait.
You might think that a persimmon was an easy thing for a 27 year old to forget about, but I’m a foodie. When fall rolled around and I tasted a persimmon for the first time, I decided that strawberry vodka was no longer my favorite fruit.
Fast forward a few [many] years…
This little beauty has become one of the things I look forward to most about the fall and winter months. When October rolls around, I pick the most gorgeous persimmons from a pile at the Farmer’s Market each week and patiently wait for them to ripen. When they’re ready, I savor every bite and give thanks that my husband doesn’t enjoy them as much as I do. For many folks, the tougher skin on the outside of a persimmon is reason enough not to bother. Personally, I enjoy experiencing the contradiction of the tough outside juxtaposed with the soft and deliciously sweet interior. But when I’m feeling generous, I peel a couple of persimmons and invite my family to savor them with me.
This year, however, I decided to change my husband’s mind about the skins entirely by making roasted Fuyu persimmons in the oven. “If you can roast the skin of a Delicata squash and make it deliciously edible,” I thought, “why not try with a persimmon?” I also wanted him to really fall in love with the sweet and mildly cinnamon-like flavor of these roasted Fuyu persimmons by pairing them with blue cheese.
You lost me at blue cheese.
I realize pairing roasted persimmons with blue cheese might sound totally strange, but so did pairing hot wax and bare skin and that worked out nicely, didn’t it?
Now you have two new things to try. You’re welcome.
OK. What type of candle should I get? And what does a roasted Fuyu persimmon taste like?
Soy, and heaven.
Do you eat the skin of the persimmons?
Read my blog above, damn it!
I did. It’s great. You’re great. But there are two different types of persimmons at the store and I’m not sure which one I should buy…
The two main types of persimmons you see in most farmers markets and groceries in the U.S. are Hachiya and Fuyu. Hachiya (oblong shaped) persimmons are astringent; the the non-astringent variety are the Fuyus (which are fat and squatty shaped). While I love the Hachiyas, you have to be really, really patient and wait for them to ripen to perfection. Which is essentially when they look like they’ve nearly composted on your counter.
Honestly, there is nothing better than a perfectly ripe Hachiya (it’s *literally* HEAVEN in your mouth!). But if you bite into it before it’s ready, it’ll be a nightmare you never forget. The tannins in the fruit instantly absorb every bit of moisture on your tongue and make you think you’ve bitten into a poisonous fruit and you’re going to die and this isn’t at all how it was supposed to end and you really should have told everyone you love just how absolutely f’ing fantastic they are.
For this recipe, we use Fuyus.
How do I know when a Fuyu persimmon is ripe?
Unlike with Hachiyas, you really can’t go wrong with Fuyus. Essentially, the darker the orange hue, the sweeter the persimmon will be. I like to wait until mine show a deep orange color and give a little bit when I squeeze them gently. When it’s ready, I remove the top stem, slice the persimmon, and eat it like an apple. (Or bake it at 400F for 15 or so minutes and pair it with other delicious ingredients…recipe below!)
Are roasted Fuyu persimmons good for you?
Yes! They’re loaded with vitamins A & C and amazing for you!
And paired with blue cheese? Let’s just say you might want to go ahead and light that soy candle now…
- 6 Fuyu persimmons (See blog above to be sure you get the right persimmon. This is very important!!!)
- 1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 package fruit and nut crackers (I used Lesley Stowe's Raincoast Crisps cranberry & hazlenut crackers for this recipe.)
- 8 oz wedge of blue cheese (If you're not into tangy cheeses, a nice brie would work well too.)
- 4 sprigs fresh rosemary, picked from stems
- fine SEA salt, to taste
- 1-2 tablespoons honey
- Preheat oven to 400F. Line a 9 x 13 baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Drizzle about 1.5 T olive oil on top of parchment paper and spread with fingers or a pastry brush to ensure parchment paper is covered with a thin layer of oil. Sprinkle with fresh rosemary leaves.
- Remove stem from persimmons and slice into 1/4" thick slices, horizontally. (Remove any seeds if you find them.) Place persimmon slices on top of parchment paper. Drizzle a bit more olive oil on top of persimmons, along with sprinkle of fine sea salt. Spread with fingers or pastry brush.
- Bake persimmon slices at 400F for 10 minutes. Flip them over and bake another 5 minutes, until edges are beginning to golden.
- While persimmons are baking, slice blue cheese into 1/4" thick slices.
- Remove parchment paper (with persimmons) and place on cooling rack. Reline baking sheet with a new layer of parchment paper. Place crackers on parchment paper, layering one slice of persimmon atop each cracker. Next, top persimmons with a slice of blue cheese.
- Return pan to oven and bake for about 3 minutes, until blue cheese is beginning to melt. Remove crackers from pan and place on serving platter. Top each cracker with any remaining crisped rosemary, along with a drizzle of honey.
- Serve warm and enjoy!
Need another delicious hors d’oeuvre recipe?
Check out my Gingersnap Pecans!