[NAFEX] Home persimmon astringency removal?

Kevin Moore aleguy33 at yahoo.com
Fri Feb 6 15:07:20 EST 2009

We grow Japanese persimmons, I'm not sure if American persimmons will grow here. I find that they become incredibly sweet, but have very little flavor. (If any escape the birds long enough to ripen.) I'm given to understand that the ones up north don't become edible until after a frost.

From: "Jwlehman at aol.com" <Jwlehman at aol.com>
To: nafex at lists.ibiblio.org
Sent: Friday, February 6, 2009 1:03:18 PM
Subject: Re: [NAFEX] Home persimmon astringency removal?

In a message dated 1/31/2009 1:11:43 PM Eastern Standard Time, Docshiva at Docshiva.org writes:

My strategy to avoid the astringency is to never, ever, eat persimmons, which I
regard as inedible but decorative, much like cranberries.  They're an
excellent tree to grow for their wood, ebony.

Dear Stephen, etl,

If you are talking about the 90 chromosome American persimmon the best way to avoid astringency is leave them on the tree until they drop naturally. Almost all will then be completely astringent free and very delicious. If you pick them from the tree they will be astringent as well as less flavorable.  

Your advise to never eat a persimmon is, based on my 19 years of persimmon growing and breeding experience with the 90 C American persimmon, ill advised! 

<Bass wrote: "Whenever I buy astringent Kaki persimmon, I place them in a bag with apples or bananas. Within 1-2 days they're soft and sweet. "

This also works with American persimmon, but may take more than 2 days. If you must pick them, leave them on the tree until nearly ripe then use the apple treatment. I've done this more than once and place them in a large glass jar with the lid on tight to retain moisture and increase the ethylene content. 

But why go to this trouble? Leave them on the tree!  If the tree holds it's fruit on late, get earlier ripening varieties.  There are varieties of American persimmon that ripen in 100 days in the midwest. Some varieties in the midwest can take 150 days.   

Astringency is caused by a chemical compound called leucodelphinidin which absorbs moisture and tends to bond protein to protein. In a ripe fruit the compound is still there but not water soluble and is therefore not detected in the mouth.  
With respect and LOL,

Jerry Lehman
7780 Persimmon St.
Terre Haute, IN 47802-4994

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