It’s time to start cooking with persimmons. This delicious fruit is an under-used gem that is the perfect source of natural sweetness for your next recipe. Available from late February to mid June, this gorgeously sweet delight is one of nature’s best deliveries throughout autumn and winter.
From cakes to salads, persimmons have the capacity to be the sweet star of any recipe. In fact, they are ideal when you want to add sweetness to a dish with otherwise salty and sour elements.
Just as rich in flavour as they are in nutritional value, the persimmon is a cooks heaven. Twice as high in dietary fibre as an apple, rich in antioxidants and fat free – it’s simple to say that a persimmon a day is a great addition to the diet.
Understandably, it is just one of those ingredients that can be slightly daunting. Luckily, persimmons are very simple to pick, prepare and store.
Sometimes named the fuyu variety, this persimmon accounts for 90% of the persimmons grown in Australia. The fruit is round and approximately 10cm in diameter. It ranges from a pale orange to a deeper red colour. They can be eaten when crisp and crunchy or once they are softened. The softer and more ripe they become, the sweeter they get, so it’s up to you!
This persimmon is large and round in shape. Unlike the sweet persimmon, this fruit must be fully ripe before consuming. If eaten early, the astringency causes a bitter and unpleasant taste.
Where are Persimmons Grown
- QLD is the major producing state in Australia
- Persimmons are otherwise grown in Coastal NSW, the Goulburn and Murray Valleys in VIC/SA and in South East WA.
How to Pick and Store Persimmons
- Pick a persimmon when it is crisp and crunchy in a similar way to an apple
- Make sure the persimmon is free from bruises and gashes.
- Handle persimmons carefully, as their skin is thin and easily marked.
- Persimmons are best stored at room temperature.
- Keep out of direct sunlight to avoid over-ripening.
How to Prepare Persimmons
- Persimmons can be easily chopped or sliced.
- Follow this simple method for slicing persimmons:
- Take a sharp utility knife
- Hold the Persimmon on its side and cut sliced of desired thickness
- Discard Persimmon stem and serve
Now that you know all the basics – get cooking with persimmons with these great ideas:
- Sweet persimmon cake served with whipped cream or greek yoghurt
- Fresh sweet persimmons served with vanilla ice-cream
- Vietnamese style salad with fresh persimmons
- Oven-baked persimmons served with a drizzle of honey and fresh cream.