The Ozarks are home to a great variety of trees, one of the things that adds to the beauty of these hills. Late fall, after the leaves have turned and fallen after their brief and glorious show, is the time for the persimmon to shine. Often the fruit hangs on long after the leaves are gone, little orange gems ~that the squirrels, birds and raccoons gather in a hurry. These persimmons are smaller and sweeter (if the are FULLY RIPE) than the kind you can buy in the grocery story from various Asian sources. And are wonderful in breads and cakes, IF you have a bit of patience to work them up. This is our favorite recipes to use up the harvest.
1/2 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup honey (OR sorghum)
1 cup raisins
1 cup nuts
1/2 cup dried fruit of your choice (pineapple tidbits or apricots are really good)
1 cup persimmon pulp
2 T. lemon juice
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
Mash persimmons flat with a fork seperate one cup pulp from seeds.
Cream honey, butter, and eggs together. add raisins, dried fruit and nuts.
sift dry ingredients into wet, stir just till combined.
Bake in two greased loaf pans at 325* for about an hour, test at 50 minutes, a knife inserted near center should come out clean. Cool five minutes in pan then remove to cooling rack and let cool completly. Wrap in plastic wrap and keep in the fridge at least over night, flavor gets better after a couple of days.
If you aren't familiar with our indigenous Persimmon or want to read more about it there is a good article here.