Monday, September 15, 2014

Persimmon Pudding

Summer flew past faster than the birds that ate all of our figs.

When The Bean was born, Mr. S and I made the decision to prioritize family. All our family. Even the ones that didn't live near us - which is practically every single relative we have.

This meant trading our typical summer activities of short-term missions to the far reaches of the earth for the familiar places and beloved people that we have for far too long neglected.

Mr. S has his familial gathering spot in a cabin in Maine - more on that in the previous post. But my family roots are firmly grounded in a farm house with white gingerbread trim, deep in corn country.

More specifically, in the kitchen of that house. It's where meals were cooked, conversation shared, and hearts filled.

I have so many memories that take place in this room. Card games late into the night, making (and ruining) meringue for the first time, Chirstmas breakfasts, sneaking treats.... I could go on. 

But now we're all a little older, and things aren't quite exactly like what they were. Including this pudding. This recipe came out of Grandma's recipe box, but it's different from what I remember. It's still delicious though - in fact most of us agreed that we liked it better than the original. It's a British pudding, in that it's a cross between a cake and what we think of as pudding. And it tastes a little like gingerbread. It's delicious.

Grandma has several American Persimmon trees growing between the two white barns near the house. These are a far cry from the Fuyu or other varieties you typically come across. They are smaller, and you have to wait until they are super mushy and fall from the tree before they are ripe.

This year's batch is just starting to ripen, so I used pulp Grandma had frozen from last year for the pudding. Just helping make space for this year's crop. I'm so considerate.  

Persimmon pudding is truly the taste of autumn. Once you eat it, you're in the mood to wear flannel shirts and walk briskly. Trust me. I know.

First up, persimmon pulp goes into a large bowl. How do you get pulp? Put the persimmons through a food mill. Or get it from grandma's freezer.

In a sifter, add the sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger.

In a medium bowl, beat the eggs with the milk and pour in the melted butter.

In three additions each, alternate mixing the wet and dry ingredients into the persimmon pulp.

Pour into an extremely well-buttered 9x13 pan. The recipe calls for an 8x12, but adding an inch doesn't hurt it one bit.

Yes, I know it doesn't look appetizing, but just wait until it's done!

Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until the center puffs up and it jiggles like jello. Serve slices, warm or cool, with good vanilla ice cream.

Pretty soon the only things left on the table will be these:

Persimmon Pudding

2 c persimmon pulp
3 eggs, beaten
2 1/4 c whole or 2% milk
1/2 c melted butter
1 1/4 c sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp fresh grated nutmeg

Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Dump persimmon pulp in a large bowl. Add all dry ingredients to a sifter. In a medium bowl beat together eggs, milk, and butter. In about three parts, alternately add and beat in the wet and dry ingredients to the persimmon pulp.

Pour into well-buttered 9x13 pan. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until jiggly and not wet.

The Bean with her Grandma and Great Grandma

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