[NAFEX] questions about [American] persimmons

Robert Bruns r.fred.bruns at gmail.com
Fri Oct 17 11:36:07 EDT 2008


Jerry -

Yes, I've read that the puckery substance precipitates out when the
persimmon becomes ripe.  What I'm wondering is whether the soluble puckery
substance cross-links something in your saliva with something in the
persimmon, producing an insoluble material that makes your mouth feel like
it's full of cotton.  Polyphenolic substances such as tannins are known to
undergo cross-linking reactions like what I described.  The ripe persimmon
may have something (enzyme, binding substance, ..?) that reverses the
reaction.  Maybe someone at one of the agricultural universities (Purdue?)
would like to figure out what's going on.

Fred

On Thu, Oct 16, 2008 at 9:22 PM, <Jwlehman at aol.com> wrote:

> In a message dated 10/16/2008 4:51:53 PM Eastern Daylight Time,
> r.fred.bruns at gmail.com writes:
>
> I wonder if ripe persimmons contain a substance that dissolves the fuzzy
> stuff that the unripe ones precipitate out.
>
> Hi Fred,
>
> Jim Claypool always said eating a ripe persimmon will clear the palate of
> astringency. It takes a minute but works.
>
> Actually the astringency doesn't dissolve, rather becomes insoluble when
> ripe. When insoluble it doesn't dissolve in the mouth, avoiding the "drawing
> the mouth awrie with much torment."  Thus was the description of an unripe
> persimmon by Caption John Smith of the Jamestown Colony.
>
> Jerry
>
>
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