Jam? Jelly? Preserves? It all gets a bit technical but I like to this of this as a jam as it is not super smooth, nor is it super chunky. The sugar content is low and the fruit offers it’s own natural pectin so the consistency is quite unique.
With persimmons winding down in the stores around here I start buying them in bulk and putting them up for future use. Storing and preserving food is in my opinion a skill that is getting lost. We are all so used to being able to just pop over to the supermarket and get what we need that we don’t know how to preserve food. This then leads to us getting stuck in the flavor ruts that the commercial food production companies have put us in. I mean how many stores can you go into and find persimmon jam? But I am getting off the topic.
Food preservation is a tricky thing and there are some special tools you need to do it right and to do it safe. Since we do a lot of canning here we have invested in the tools. To extend the shelf life of the ingredient was now water-bath and pressure can, we dehydrate, and we freeze.
When I bought my last round of persimmons I dehydrated quite a few of them, I chopped some up to use in that weeks lunches and the rest continued to ripen. Now, I should specify that we use Fuyu Persimmons. As these ripen they get softer and softer. It was past the point of when we wanted to process them but we still had a lot of usable fruit.
We started with picking out what was usable and quartering the persimmons. We then added a little water and get them boiling over high heat. Then in batches we puréed them. This is the point where you can decide how chunky you want it. We returned them to the pot and added honey, sugar and lemon juice. The lemon juice was primarily to lower the pH levels so it would be safe to water-bath can.
Then it was bring it back to a boil and can it. Now they are shelf stable and it can be used on toast, in cakes, or even as fillings in pastry and I don’t have to worry about the persimmons spoiling.