Persimmons are in season from November to February, and I made sure to get a bunch of the luscious fruit a couple months back from the SF ferry building’s farmers market. I’m partial to the Hachiyas, which are heart-shaped and edible when super-soft to the touch. I waited for them to get really ripe before popping them into the fridge so that I could eat them like ice cream.
But then I stumbled across a lovely recipe for persimmon bread in the January 2012 issue of Bon Appetit magazine, and of course, I had to give it a try.
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter plus more for pan
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour plus more for pan
- 1/2 cup raisins (I used the golden variety)
- 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 4 large, very ripe Hachiya persimmons
- 1/3 cup buttermilk (I subbed plain yogurt with good results)
- 2 tablespoons finely grated orange zest
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 1/2 cup of pecans, crushed (this isn’t in the BA recipe, but I’m partial to pecans and their savory crunch)
I first got the raisins plumping in a bowl with 2 tablespoons of hot water. Then, in another bowl, I whisked together the flour, whole wheat flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. In yet another bowl, I scooped the persimmons, which I’d thawed after removing from the freezer, out of their skins.
I whisked the persimmon purée, yogurt and zest until smooth, then set it aside. In another bowl, I beat the butter a couple of minutes, then added the sugar and beat a few more minutes, until it got light and fluffy. In went the eggs, which I beat in thoroughly. I then added in the persimmon mixture and combined well. I added the dry ingredients in three parts, folding until just mixed in. The raisins went in last. I poured the batter into a buttered and well-floured pan, then popped it into the oven for about an hour and change.