Friday, December 23, 2016

Persimmon Muffins

I bought a persimmon at the Asian market several weeks ago. Mid-November. It was hard and hard and hard then had a smallish softish spot and then all of a sudden...squishy. I scraped the pulp out of the skin and almost ate it as is, but decided it would be better utilized in a dessert of some sort. Since it was already a puree and all. But what kind of dessert? I had a box of cream cheese without a plan in the fridge, but didn't want to fuss with a crust. And perhaps the creamy cheese would completely muffle the fruit's sweet flavor. Instead, I opted to make muffins.

I figured a modified apple muffin would work, and Martha Stewart's version with oats seemed ideal. It didn't require buttermilk or yogurt or any other stuff I didn't already have on hand. I swapped out the apple for persimmon, and the 1/2 cup milk for 1/4 cup of light cream (you can use half and half or milk), upped the cinnamon and sugar, and added nutmeg, vanilla, and walnuts. The result is hearty, yet delicately flavored and not too sweet. A perfect breakfast treat, IMHO.

Persimmon Walnut Oat Muffins (adapted from Martha Stewart)

1 stick butter
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1/4 cup cream
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 1/2 cup AP flour
1 cup quick oats
1 large very ripe persimmon, skin removed and chopped into a fine saucy pulp
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease a standard 12-cup muffin tin (or 2 6-cup tins), or line with cupcake liners.

Put the butter in a large glass bowl and pop it in the microwave for a minute or so at high heat to melt. Let cool for a bit before stirring in the sugar and vanilla and beating in the eggs, cream, baking powder, salt, and spices. Add the flour and oats, mixing just until blended. Stir in the persimmon pulp and walnuts.

Scoop batter evenly into the prepared tin or tins. Place on a baking sheet to catch any drips. Bake for 20 minutes, turning tin 180° halfway through baking.

Remove from tins and allow to cool on a rack. Eat warm with butter or at room temperature.

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