Whole Wheat Persimmon Muffins
In Season: Persimmons
Last month we were lucky to have two special visitors. Even though it was a short stop over, we were happy to see O’s dad and sister before their Kilimanjaro climb (which by the way, they were successful in reaching the peak!) On their way to Arusha, they visited for a couple of days and brought us Bon Appetit issues we missed since we were last in NY.
In the January (2012) issue there is a recipe for Persimmon bread that both O and I were excited about. Instead of making a loaf, I decided to turn the recipe into muffins and to play around with the ingredients. Persimmons are such delicious winter fruit and provide a natural sweetness to the muffins. I used very soft, ripe Fuyu Persimmons (tomato like) but you can also use the Hachiyas (larger, heart shaped variety). This article describes in detail the differences between both breeds.
These vintage illustrations depict the different attributes of both breeds:
Regardless of the type of persimmon you find at your local market, the important factor here, is to make sure the ones you pick are very ripe. This recipe is quick and simple but the most time-consuming aspect is detaching the skin and retracting the flesh. My method for removing the skin involved a serrated peeler (the ones usually used for tomatoes) and my bare hands. Because the fruit is so ripe, the peeler doesn’t work as well, but it gave me a good jump-start.
This is what the flesh looks like before its pureed:
The orange zest gives the muffins a tangy bite.
What You’ll Need:
1/2 C. (1 stick) Unsalted Butter
3/4 C. Whole Wheat Flour
1/2 C. Oat Bran
1/4 C. All Purpose (white) Flour
1 TSP. Baking Soda
1 TSP. Kosher Salt
1 TSP. Cinnamon
4-6 Persimmons (very ripe)
1/3 C. Buttermilk
2 TBSP. Orange Zest (finely grated)
1 C. Sugar
2 Large Eggs
Preheat oven to 350. Butter or oil muffin trays. I used two 6-cavity trays (each cavity holds an amount of 1/2 C). In a medium bowl, whisk the flours and oat bran together with baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside. Scoop persimmon flesh into a blender and puree until smooth. Measure one 1 cup of the puree, place in a different medium bowl, and whisk in buttermilk and orange zest. Set mixture aside.
Whisk the eggs by hand. Process butter in food processor (with plastic blade) until light and creamy (about 2 minutes), add sugar and blend until fluffy (about 4 minutes). Gradually add beaten eggs until mixture is well combined. Slowly add persimmon mixture; beat until integrated. Add dry ingredients in 3 batches, beating until well combined.
Pour batter into the prepared muffin cups (fill three-fourths of the cup with batter, otherwise will overflow) and bake for one hour. Let muffins cool for 20 minutes.