Persimmon Bread

I'm a huge fan of loafs that we call breads but that are actually humble snacking cakes.  Not only can one eat them for breakfast, lunch, dinner or anytime in between, but I personally view them as one food item designed to keep you on the verge of losing it.  Perhaps that says more about myself than anyone else, but they are practically designed to be had at any hour with a cup of coffee or tea–and according to Caitlin Moran:

"‘Nine times out of ten, you probably aren’t having a full-on nervous breakdown – you just need a cup of tea and a biscuit." 

She is British, so it's fair to replace biscuit with a slice of loaf cake.

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When my pal, Lilian of Chinese Grandma, posted Persimmon Bread, I knew I'd have to make my very own.  Two Hachiya persimmons are used for this–not to be confused with the also widely-available Fuyu variety.  Hachiyas can only be eaten when squishy-soft, which results in a gorgeous burnt orange-tinted jelly.  

Nutmeg is the complementing spice in this, and it's just perfect.  I'm a cinnamon fiend, but cinnamon also takes the front seat in the spice world.  Nutmeg adds sparkle to the star: the persimmon, of course.

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My mom immediately deemed this as "so Christmasy," my sister smiled and mumbled, "SO gooooood," and a family friend about fainted, so I think it's fair to say that this recipe is worth keeping on record.  In fact, I think it's my personal favorite in the loaf cake genre.  How about that.

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Persimmon Bread

Adapted from Chinese Grandma/David Lebovitz/James Beard

INGREDIENTS: (makes 1, 9” loaf)

  • 1 ¾ cups (8 ounces) all-purpose flour
  • ½  teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¾ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup (6 ounces) sugar
  • ½  cup (1 stick) butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup plain greek yogurt
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup Hachiya persimmon pulp (2 squishy-soft Hachiya persimmons)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour a 9” loaf pan.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt and nutmeg.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the melted butter, yogurt, eggs, vanilla and persimmon pulp.  It’s ok if there’s larger chunks of persimmon.

Make a well in the center of dry ingredients and use a rubber spatula to stir in the wet ingredients. Stir just until mixed and pour into prepared loaf pan.

Bake 1 hour, or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

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