Perfect Discovery: Persimmons

The persimmon is a fruit I’ve ignored. It wasn’t that I disliked it–no, it was a simple case of ignorance. Maybe if I’d known it was called the “fruit of the gods,” I wouldn’t have waited so long. Then, suddenly, it was in my face, when a friendly vendor at the Ferry Building Farmers’ Market in San Francisco held a piece out to me, imploring me to try a fresh-cut persimmon. At dinner that night, I ordered a salad with persimmons and knew I would be searching for recipes. Food & Wine has a salad recipe for root vegetables and persimmons and my friend Rebecca, who was with me at the Farmers’ Market for a-ha moment, adapted it to work with what she had on hand. I’ve had it three times in a week. The photo above shows Sunday’s version, with some purple carrots.

Root Vegetable and Persimmon Salad with Butter Lettuce

Head of butter lettuce
2-4 carrots
1 persimmon
2 parsnips

For the vinaigrette:
3 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. rice vinegar
1 tsp. soy sauce
1 tsp. orange juice
1 tsp. ponzu
salt and pepper

Cut the carrots and parsnips into nickel-sized pieces and place them in roasting pan.

Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for approximately 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened but still firm. Remove and allow to come to room temperature.

Cut the persimmon into the same nickel-sized pieces.

Toss butter lettuce with cooled root vegetables and persimmons and dress when ready to serve.