5 Ways to Use Persimmons (Not Just Recipes)


A common quandary in the Russian River Valley this time of year is what to do with all the persimmons? A full-grown tree can produce a lot of fruit, and all of it is ripe at the exact same time. The fruit is too precious to let it spoil -- I see small, little guys going for $2 at the local grocery store -- so here are some ideas for how you can use all that lovely fruit so it doesn't go to waste:

  1. Donate them. I take all of our extra persimmons -- as well as any other excess produce we have throughout the year -- to Food for Thought, a food bank in Forestville for those affected by HIV/AIDS in Sonoma County. It's so easy: I just load up my fruit, take it over when they're open between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Tuesdays through Saturdays, and drop it off. They're always so appreciative, and I'm glad not to let useful food go to waste!
  2. Skeweredpersimmons_Sunset
  3. Make an appetizer. I love this no-cook appetizer, Skewered Persimmon and Herb Bites, that I saw in the November edition of Sunset magazine. These little sticks are completely healthy while serving up a great combo of flavors: sweet, spicy, herbal and salty.
  4. Dry them without a dehydrator. Last year, my dear friend Mary showed me how to use her dehydrator to dry the persimmons for a yummy, chewy snack. Unfortunately, I didn't own a dehydrator then and I don't own one now. But I did find this Martha Stewart recipe for drying persimmons in the oven. They don't last as long as dehydrated persimmons, but they are still delicious.
  5. But if you do own a dehydrator… My mouth has been watering over this dessert I saw recently on the Jordan Winery blog: Dried Fuyu Persimmons with Dulcey Blond Chocolate and Sea Salt. I know, isn't your mouth watering now, too? It makes me want to go buy that dehydrator I otherwise say I don't need.
  6. Use them as decorations. Hanging persimmons by their stems for a month and letting them slowly air dry makes a Japanese delicacy called Hoshigaki. It sounds like a lot of work, based on the very educational blog from RootSimple.com, but nothing can be more striking during the autumn months than bright-orange orbs hanging near a window. And they'll be done just in time to give them away as Christmas gifts.


For all of the persimmon recipes as well as other Gantz Family Vineyards' favorites, check out our Pinterest board "Favorite Vineyard Recipes."