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Sunday, Dec. 21, 2014

Persimmon Power!

Posted Tuesday, September 27, 2011, at 10:54 AM

(Photo)
Don't eat them when they're green!!

Yesterday the sky was so blue and the clouds were so white and puffy that I searched all over the farm for something PRETTY to feature in a sky-cloud photo. As we all know, it's been a DRY summer, and it looks as if our fall colors are going to be brown-on-brown!

Up on the hill, where my husband's old 1963 Massey-Ferguson combine sat last winter (when I sold it for junk metal) I found a little persimmon tree that had survived the wrecking ball.

Ordinarily, the persimmons are a beautiful burnt orange, but this year may be an exception. Persimmon trees obviously ripen at different times, because these on the old combine hill don't look anywhere close. And, yet, my mouth still has the sweet autumn taste of the persimmons I picked up off the ground by the house, where they ARE ripe.

Most years, I just pick up the persimmons and eat them, one at a time (if I can beat my dogs to them), but one year the mother of one of my high school students sent me a recipe for persimmon cookies.

I made the cookies, and my assessment of the project is this--Persimmon cookies are DELICIOUS, if someone else makes them! As for myself, the effort does not offer reward enough to justify all that mashing and straining of seeds.

Judging from the reaction when I posted this photo on my Facebook page, there are a lot of people who have never seen a persimmon--much less tasted one.

A number of friends said that they had tasted one at the wrong time! Nothing worse than eating an unripe persimmon!! My mouth puckers at the thought!

I suspect that everything in nature loves this orange fruit. I've seen coyote scat with persimmon seeds in it, and I know my goats and dogs always loved persimmons.

Fall is a wonderful time in Missouri! Get out and enjoy the changing of the seasons. Pick up a ripe persimmon and take a bite! I'll bet the studies show how much longer you'll live!!!

From the brown and yellow hills of Tillman, Mo., this is your rural reporter Madeline, signing off on a beautiful, cool September Tuesday!


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Out in California, we had the domesticated verion of persimmons. Those are much larger than the ones that grow wild out here. My mom would make persimmon cookies, persimmon bread, persimmon preserves, etc. She would also skin some of them, put popcicle sticks in them, and put them in the freezer. What a tasty treat that was! Eating them ripe right off the tree is also a delight. The wild ones are just as sweet as the domesticated variety.

Yes, I love fall in southeast Missouri!

-- Posted by swift on Tue, Sep 27, 2011, at 3:27 PM

So California is where those giant persimmons come from! Shoulda known!

-- Posted by goat lady on Wed, Sep 28, 2011, at 8:34 AM

Yep! It's one of the few good things from that state. Air pollution (smog) has taken its toll on the fruit grown there. Even back in the '70s when I was in my teens, once thriving orchards and vineyards in southern California were beginning to show the consequences of urban sprawl.

I'll eat Missouri persimmons and be thankful!

-- Posted by swift on Wed, Sep 28, 2011, at 3:33 PM

You've got to love the time of year, when you can take a walk down through the woods and taste your "home country" in a small piece of fruit, by the Grace of God, for you to enjoy!! Bring on the freeze, so they'll all be RIPE!!!!! Regards to the Bootheel, kkr

-- Posted by kkcaver47 on Sun, Oct 2, 2011, at 10:38 PM


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Madeline DeJournett
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Madeline (Giles) DeJournett is the Advance writer for the North Stoddard Countian. A retired high school English/history teacher, she spent 32 years teaching in 5 schools in Missouri and Alaska. These days, she lives quietly with a menagerie of wild and domestic animals on 52 secluded acres in the remote Tillman hills south of Advance. She graduated from Dexter High School in 1960 and Southeast Missouri State in 1964. She can be contacted at advancensc@sbcglobal.net or by phone at 573-722-5322.