In autumn, when nature turns its visual pallet into all kinds of earthy colors and the wind blows away the leaves on almost every tree, we suddenly look upon those naked trees and find many ripe and juicy fruits hanging from their crowns. For instance, such as one of my favorite fruits, persimmons.
If you happen to wander around Primorska in the autumn and winter time, such scenes as the one above should be quite familiar. There is almost no garden without at least one persimmon tree about. A fine, tall tree with ripe and big circular fruits, hanging heavy and their bright color blending them in with the scenery around; a scenery which is soon to fall asleep till spring, to get its well-deserved seasonal rest.
As soon as we put these orange-red fruits on the table, every mood, may it be oh-so gloomy, immediately brightens up. We remove the wooden “hat” from the persimmon and eat the juicy inners of the berry with a spoon. Once in your mouth, the crop releases a very sugary taste with a kind of a bitter note on the peel, which is covered in small, tinny fur. The fruit inners vitalize our frame and brighten up our soul as well as the body, which gets high-absorbent and good fats in its system and fills us up with energy.
The maybe real reason why I love persimmon more than normally is thanks to a mountain tour I did with my friend Dario Cortes some time ago. After we reached the first of four tops in our planned tour for that day, we really needed some fast and long-lasting energy to get us going. And Dario, how could it be different, immediately packed out some persimmon out of his backpack, which filled me up to the brim and thanks to them I could continue my expedition on the remaining heights and return back at nightfall to the starting point at Tolminska Raven.
It is so that I came to know this berry in a very practical way – besides the plentiful water it holds on the inside, in hides many carbohydrates, along with some minerals, which come in handy when exerting yourself and sweating a lot. A real wonder fruit is all I can say!
But the hike is in the past. Now I clobber on a plain filed in front of me and sit straight for a whole day, every day, and work on my computer. The energy which I need now is mostly for my brains, which hike around on their own in circles, while doing their hard work every day, like when I was writing this article. My mind doesn’t wander off to beans or different kinds of potatoes, but the restless soul really yearns for something sweet to ease the child inside. And in those moments I remember the simple persimmon, which a hundred years ago Vesna Štih made in her designs, which the three of us got and dreamt along of her never-to-be-finished collection of child textiles. But the memory of those autumn sweet-treat remains, and I would like to share that special feeling with all of you.
Persimmons, chestnuts and whip cream
For 4 sweet treats we need:
4 ripe, soft persimmons,
1 handful of cooked and peeled chestnuts (you can also leave these out),
1 spoon of grained sugar or wild honey,
2 dl of whipping cream,
4 tall wine glasses for serving
Remove the wooden stem and remove the juicy innards with a spoon, so the skin is removed. Smooth the innards with a handheld mixer into an even consistency (for an exotic taste you can add a spoonful of grained star anise). Pour the mixture into the 4 tall wine glasses.
Jam the chestnuts with a spoon of sugar or honey also with a mixer to a smooth mass (to maximize the taste of chestnuts, add a pinch of cinnamon or vanilla). Add the whipping cream into the dry mixture of the chestnuts and mix until stiff. Place the cream on top of the persimmon mixture in the wine glasses. Serve immediately and be prepared to answer questions, such as “How did you make it this good?” and enjoy.
I am a star-eyed observer; I watch the world unfold before me and I am amazed at everything I see. The human person is always my main focus, even when I chop up carrots or write down my recipes. I like to talk to people that work with their own hands and with the earths soil itself. At home I crouch down before my computer and type down every impression and every note form the last 5 years and I publish this at the very end in a book for everybody to read. Throughout this whole process I always stay a father, sometimes a little grumpy, other times cheerful and high in spirit.