Roasted chops with persimmon.
The persimmon, sometimes called sharon fruit or kaki, has much to commend it. Persimmons are high in beta carotine and minerals such as sodium, magnesium, calcium and iron. They also taste delicious – providing you know what you’re buying, and eat it at the right moment. There are actually two main types of persimmon: astringent, often called hachiya persimmon, and non-astringent, or fuyu persimmon.
You need to know which you’re dealing with: non-astringen or fuyu persimmon can be eaten barely ripe, they are firm and crisp, while the astringent or hayachi kind tastes rich, sweet & spicy when ripe, but mouth-puckeringly tart if they’re unripe. Fortunately, it’s not hard to tell when a hachiya persimmon is ripe, they should be so soft that their sweet, almost jelly-like flesh practically bursts through their skins.
Fresh fuyus are generally firm enough to slice and munch like an apple (peel them if you prefer, but the skin is perfectly edible); they work well in salads, baked in pies and cakes, or combined with roasted meat like in the recipe below. Hachiyas, on the other hand, are often too squishy to bite into without making a mess, it’s better to cut them in half and spoon out the flesh, or use them in jams or compotes.