Autumn means persimmons. My friend Maz has a persimmon tree in her backyard – one year she gave me 5kgs of persimmons. Holy crap. What can you do with so many persimmons? I’m the only person in the house who’ll eat them, and even then I prefer the non-astringent Fuyu type.
This year she asked if I wanted any. I firmly told her that I only wanted a few. She countered with an offer of twenty – I’m guessing her tree is rather prolific.
I grudgingly agree to twenty.
She showed up with a box. There were *definitely* more than twenty. I should’ve counted them out and made her take the extra home. 😉
So far I’ve eaten a few and the other weekend I trialled baking with them by putting them into a cake. The cake turned out okay – it’s an adaptation of a whole orange and almond meal cake with additional spices. The result is a cake with a wet, pudding like texture. It’s sweet and contains the honey notes of the persimmon and is spiced with cinnamon and vanilla.
Like I said – it was okay. It’s not amazing. It could use a bit more work, but hey – if you have a glut of persimmons and need an idea – you could give this one a try.
Oh and a warning – if your persimmons are the astringent type, they must must must be entirely soft before you use them. I’ve taken a bite of an unripe one before (hey, I was interested to see if it would be as awful as people say) and trust me – you do not want to eat that shit. I had to rinse my mouth about five times before the powdery sensation started to fade. Erk.
Adapted from The Cooks Companion
About 10 medium sized fully ripe persimmons
6 eggs, lightly beaten
250g ground almonds
200g caster sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking powder
Preheat the oven to 190°C. Grease a 20cm springform tin and line the base with baking paper.
Scoop out the flesh of the persimmons and add to a blender. Blend until smooth.
Pour into a large bowl and add the eggs, ground almonds, caster sugar, cinnamon, vanilla extract, salt and baking powder. Mix to combine.
Pour into the prepared tin and bake for about 45 mins – 1 hour. (It may need a bit longer – pierce it with a skewer to check how done it is. If it’s still very wet, bake for longer.)