Fresh persimmons (like the ones from Arata Farms) can be somewhat mystifying and even a little intimidating if you’re new to them. Firm on the outside with a tender flesh, they look like an orange tomato but have a taste that is sweet, rich and satisfying.
In this easy, vegan quick-bread recipe (adapted from this one from Fat Free Vegan), persimmons get the banana bread treatment. The bread is moist and sweet enough without it, but if you’re craving icing, whisk together 1/3 cup powdered sugar, a few drops of vanilla and a splash of soy milk for a quick glaze to drizzle over the top.
1 1/4 cups fresh persimmons, chopped finely
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons canola oil or unsweetened applesauce
1/2 sugar, Sucanat or agave nectar
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
pinch teaspoon salt
1/4 cup raisins (optional)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a medium loaf pan.
In a small bowl, use the back of a fork to smash the chopped persimmons. Stir in the lemon juice, oil or apple sauce, and sweetener. In a large bowl, combine the remaining ingredients, except for raisins and walnuts. Pour the wet into the dry and mix just until all flour is moistened (do not over-mix). Fold in the raisins and walnuts, if desired.
Pour into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 35-45 minutes. Allow to cool for 10 minutes and then remove from the pan. Cool completely before slicing and serving.
Makes about 12 servings.