Last week my Cambodian friends, Vathana & Sam brought me a case of Persimmons. They knew I like them. Just want to share some information about these with all my friends and families.
Persimmons are generally light yellow-orange to dark red-orange in color. The word Persimmon is derived from pessamin or putchamin meaning “a dry fruit” from Powhatan, an Algonquian language of the eastern United States. Its shape varies. It can be acorn, spherical or pumpkin shaped. Commercially, there a two types of persimmon – non-astringent and astringent.
The most common types of astringent persimmon is the heart-shaped Hachiya. It is because this astringent persimmon contain of very high levels of tannins and are unpalatable if eaten unripe. Before ripening, persimmon is usually have “chalky” or “bitter taste. To consume this fruit you need to make sure that is always ripen into a very soft fruit so that the astringency of tannins is removed.
The non-astringent persimmon is like a tomato and is commonly sold as Fuyu. When they meant by non-astringent, it is not actually free of tannins but are far less astringent before ripening and could be eaten when still firm.
In Japan, there is another type of persimmon called Goma, the pollination-variant non-astringent persimmon. When it is fully pollinated, the flesh is brown and can be eaten firm. It is very less available except at specialty markets only. There are 3 best known varieties of these kind are sold. They are Maru –Cinnamon Persimmon, Hyakume-Brown Sugar and lastly Tsurnoko-Chocolate Persimmon