Sweet and Sour Persimmons

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There's two types of persimmons - hachiya - which cannot be eaten until they have ripened or dried to a sweet mush. Then, there's fuyu. Short, squat, it's the elegant hachiya's endearing cousin. Eaten more akin to an apple, they strike me as the everday man's persimmon - while the hachiya is the favorite of puddings, and dried, sweet leather.

In California for a few days, I was struck again and again by the persimmon trees growing in backyards and front yards alike. It inspired me. And, as persimmons have such a short season - the time to strike is now! 

Write me down,
As the one who loved poetry
And persimmons
-Shiki

I could have made something fancier, but today was a busy day. So, I opted for something easy - vinegared persimmons on a bed of wilted spinach (if you choose). Eat them simply sliced and dressed as a refreshing snack, or as a cleansing sidedish to your meal. 


Ingredients:

1 ripe fuyu persimmon
3 tablespoons rice vinegar
A dash salt
1-2 teaspoons scant sugar
1 handful spinach (optional)

Cookware:

Pan
Seive
Cookie cutters (optional)
Bowl

Directions: 

1. Peel the persimmon carefully, trying to preserve as much of the flesh as possible.
2. Slice into medium-thick slices. If desired, using a small cookie cutter cut out shapes.
3. In a small bowl, combine vinegar, salt, and sugar. Add the persimmons.
4. In a frying pan, add a small amount of water, add 1 handful of spinach, and bring to a boil. Once the spinach has begun to wilt, strain it in the seive and run under cold water. 
5. Turn off the water, and using your hands squeeze out as much moisture out of the spinach as possible. Add the spinach to the persimmon-vinegar mixture.
6. Allow the flavors to blend for a few minutes before serving.