I’m so happy that Persimmon season is finally here! They are my favorite Autumn fruit… What is a Persimmon? Persimmons are native to Japan, China, Korea, Burma and Nepal. Like the tomatoes, persimmons are not commonly considered to be berries, but morphologically the fruit is in fact a berry.
Persimmons are not only delicious, but full of dietary fiber and nutrients such as manganese, beta-carotene, vitamin C, and iron.
The Hachiya variety is slightly heart-shaped and is the most common variety of astringent persimmon. These astringent persimmons contain high levels of soluble tannins and can only be consumed when they are completely ripe and softened. Your palate would have a shock if you happen to taste an unripe Hachiya persimmon, the best way to describe the taste is a very unpleasant metallic and chalky sensation on the tongue.
However, when the Hachiya persimmons are evenly ripe, they are so juicy, sweet and delicious, the texture is almost like eating a fruity soft ice cream. To enjoy, cut the Hachiya persimmon in half lengthwise, and use a spoon to scoop out the soft juicy flesh.
The Fuyu is a non-astringent persimmon and is squat like a tomato. It does contain some tannins but could be consumed when still firm and all the way to very soft.
You eat Fuyu persimmons like you would an apple.
Typically for baking, Fuyu persimmons are more commonly used.
How Do You Use Persimmons?
The best way to enjoy Persimmons is to eat them fresh when they are ripe. You can also enjoy dried or dehydrated persimmons sold in most Asian stores, they need to be dipped in boiling water before being eaten.
Persimmons can be added to cookies and cake recipes. Use persimmons instead of bananas in bread or cake recipes.
My pretty Persimmon Tart Recipe.
This tart is almost too pretty to be eaten! It’s quite simple to make and combines the best of both fruit desserts worlds: delicious pie crust with almond cream and fresh Persimmons. If you are in a rush, you could also use store-bought pie crust.
- 4 oz Butter, softened
- 1/2 cup Sugar
- 2 Eggs
- 1 cup Almond Flour
- 2 tspn Dark rum or 2 tspn vanilla extract
- 1/8 tspn Almond Extract
- 1 pinch Salt
- 5 to 6 Fuyu Persimmons, thinly sliced
- 1 tablespoon pomegranate seeds (optional)
- 1 Prebaked 9-10 inch Tart Shell or see below for authentic French pastry shell recipe
- 1 tbsp Apricot Jam, strained for glazing
French Tart Shell ingredients
- 3 oz Butter, cut into pieces
- 1 tbsp Vegetable oil
- 3 tbsp Water
- 1 tbsp Sugar
- Pinch Salt
- 5.5 oz Flour
Instructions for the Tart Shell
- Preheat oven to 400F (200C)
- In medium oven proof bowl, combine butter, oil, water, sugar and saltPlace bowl in oven until the butter is bubbling and starts to brown around the edges (around 12 to 15 minutes)
- When done, remove the bowl from the oven (caution: the bowl will be very hot), add the flour and stir it in quickly until it comes together and forms a ball which pulls away from the sides of the bowl.
- Transfer the dough to a 9″ tart mold with a removable bottom, and spread it with a spatula. Reserve a knob of dough to patch later if necessary.
- When the dough is cool enough to handle, pat it into the shell with the heel of your hand and use your fingers to press it up against the sides of the tart mold.
- Prick the dough all over with a fork. Then bake the tart shell in the oven for 15 minutes or until the dough is golden brown. If there’s any crack, use the reserved dough to patch, using your fingers to smooth it gently over the crack.
- Let shell cool before filling.
Instructions for the almond cream
- Preheat Oven to 375F or 190C
- To prepare the Frangipane (almond) cream: In a medium mixing bowl, use a whisk to beat the butter and sugar, add the eggs one by one, the almond flour, the rum (or vanilla extract), almond extract, pinch of salt until smooth.
- Spread the Frangipane cream in the prebaked tart shell.
- Bake in preheated oven for 35 minutes. Remove the tart from the oven. The Frangipane cream should look golden. Let cool.
- Meanwhile wash and thinly slice 5 to 6 Fuyu Persimmons (I left the skin on so the persimmons can hold the shape better)
Display each slice to form rose petals all over the cooled almond cream. The almond cream is still soft so you can slightly push each petal in to the cream so they can hold better. Start first with the outer petal layer, and fill each circle with more slices to form a rose.
After all the roses are formed, heat the apricot jam, add 1/2 teaspoon water (or rum) to make it more liquid. Strain and brush on top of the tart as glaze.
Sprinkle some pomegranate seeds on top and serve.
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