I love to make treats to share with friends at the holidays and a few years ago I decided to tackle the persimmon. Now, if you haven’t had one, you might be a bit curious about their taste which is sort of pear-like even though they look like a tomatoes. I mostly liked the color when I jar them, but they do have wonderful health properties too, such as Vitamin C for the common cold, which I’m currently battling since returning from vacation.
I read over a bunch of persimmon jam recipes and decided that even with 18 persimmons, there was no way I was adding more than a cup or 2 of sugar (one recipe asked for over 10 cups!), so call this a fruit spread which is plenty sweet and quite festive with the taste and aroma of nutmeg. Adapt the recipe to however many persimmons you can find and enjoy this spread.
1 Tbsp nutmeg
1 Tbsp cinnamon
1 orange (zest & juice)
2 lemons (zest & juice)
1 package pectin (optional)
2 cups of sugar (or to taste)
First, score ripe persimmons with an X on the bottom (as you would tomatoes for making sauce) and drop them into a pot of boiling water. When they float to the top, you’ll see that where you scored is loose and this will help with peeling them. You can eat the skin, but it wouldn’t work well in the jam. Cut persimmons and watch for a dark pit that may be in some and remove. Put in your Cuisinart and blend/pulse until well pureed.
Add persimmons, along with spice and citrus back into your pot and cook at a simmer until soft. Simultaneously, in a separate pot, take the sugar, along with 1 3/4 cup water and boil to a simple syrup (until sugar dissolves) and then add to persimmons. I opted to add 1 package of pectin to make it more jammy and it did add to the sweetness. If you decided to do this, use the pot you used for the sugar and make a simply syrup of pectin separately. If you don’t, it will clump up and ruin your jam. I like it a little less sweet and Michael likes it quite sweet so we landed somewhere in the middle so use your judgement. Nutmeg can be overpowering so I don’t recommend using more.
I’ve been eating it with my yogurt and on toast. I think it would also be lovely on a cheese platter if you’re serving that over the holidays. It could also go well over ice cream. And of course, I jar it up and give it to friends to enjoy. (I tried jarring, instead of plain tupperware, for the first time–very easy using your big pot with boiling water–no special system necessary— just put water 1 inch over the jars and boil!)
I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday or day off from work!