Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Fresh Persimmon Dessert--Light, Easy, and Healthy

About this time a year ago, pomegranates were the hit of the season for me. I simply could not get enough of them. This year, for change, I have gone crazy about persimmons. I buy them by pounds, peel off, cut, and eat like apples, several a day. I have never seen them more ripe and sweet and just cannot resist their taste. They are so perfect that they hardly have this characteristic, starchy aftertaste, but they are just sweet like honey, which makes me almost want to squeeze some lemon juice on them.

This year, I buy mostly the hachiya variety of persimmons. They are larger, sweeter, more juicy, and have a brighter orange color than the more common Jiro persimmons that look like flat unripe tomatoes. In the Middle Eastern or Asian stores, where they truly know how they should taste, they are sold in their most perfect stage--very sweet but not yet mushy.

Sometimes, the products of the nature are so perfect that we cannot do much to make them taste better. I think that it is the case with persimmons. But I was just thinking how to popularize these wonderful fruits, which are rich in oxidants and potassium, but also help digest lipids and therefore help prevent heart diseases.

To preserve their nutritional value I was thinking about serving them fresh. My first idea was to make a smoothie with them. Unfortunately, milk made the persimmon taste too bland. So I puréed the fruits with a blender and spooned over the glass goblets. Then I topped it generously with my favorite Greek yogurt. It was good but the contrast was too strong, so I drizzled a bit of running honey on top of yogurt. It was almost perfect but I just needed some extra texture. I sprinkled yogurt with toasted almonds and when I tried it for the last time it was what I was looking for. It became my favorite dessert in last weeks and sometimes, when I added some toasted oatmeal to it, also a breakfast.

Persimmon Dessert

4 hachiya persimmons,
1 cup of Greek fat free yogurt,
4 tsp running honey, preferably acacias,
4 tsp toasted almond flakes,
mint leaves to decorate.

1. Cut each persimmon in half, remove the seeds, and the tough core.

2. Peel off each half and chop. Put fruits in a blender and run the engine until the fruit is nearly puréed. Or just chop the fruits very finely. Divide it among four glass goblets.

2. A a tablespoon of Greek yogurt to each goblet. Drip a teaspoon of honey on top and sprinkle it with toasted almonds. Chill for about half an hour in a refrigerator.

Decorate with mint and serve.