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Persimmon Nut Bread

Waking up late on a weekend morning, just in time to see the golden orange syrup of first light in autumn playing on the last of the turned leaves and the deep dark green of the pines, and I felt inspired to be outdoors. We winterized, cutting back my fruit trees and clearing the flower beds, trimming up outgrowth and splitting wood.

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Autumn is shifting toward winter, first frost is coming, the light stays filtered in amber all day and the long shadows never dissipate from sunrise to dark. Inside, the smell of chicken broth from the all-day cooking of chicken and dumplings mingled with the smell of an apple pie baking. It’s cool season, when cooking becomes heavy and the savory smells of each meal permeate the air long after the food is devoured. And this is the season when an instinctual need to bake takes over.


This year, inspired by some stunning persimmons, I opted to adapt a bread recipe of my granny’s with a recipe run once in the Times-Picayune. As a child, it was ritualistic, annually watching with wide eyed anticipation a persimmon being cut open deftly and carefully with a two inch pocket knife. Would there be a knife, fork, or spoon inside? Did the almanac predict the same? If so it’s gospel truth. If not, the almanac must be having an off year, because the persimmons know.

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And so an homage to those most beautiful of autumn fruits, those natural weathercasters, a deliciously moist bread. It’s none too rich and well adapted to be served as a light snack to guests this time of year or to be eaten by hand leaning lazily against the kitchen counter barely awake in the a.m. as the coffee brews and the first orangey gold light lazily peers through the windows.


pb10post½ cup melted unsalted butter, cooled
¼ cup buttermilk
1 ½ cups sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 cup persimmon pulp, mashed
1 ¾ cups flour
½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
½ tsp nutmeg
½ tsp clove
½ tsp allspice
½ cup chopped walnuts
½ cup dried cranberries

Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, blend the butter and sugar. Add the eggs and persimmon, mixing to combine. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Stir flour mixture into permission mixture, alternating with the buttermilk. Add walnuts and cranberries and mix well. Pour into one large or two small greased and floured loaf pans. Bake for one hour in smaller pans or one hour and fifteen minutes for larger pan or until toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.



  1. This recipe sounds delicious with the addition of cranberries. There is definitely something about the cooling weather that motivates me to bake as well – especially warm, spicy flavours like this. I’ve just started to bake with persimmons so I’m keen to give your recipe a try.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It is a fabulous recipe, albeit the persimmon loaf you posted looks delish. That is a must try. (Summer is starting here, so I’ll have to wait a bit.) But if you like cherries, try dried cherries as well in this recipe. After posting (of course) I found I like them even more than the cranberries as they add both tartness and sweetness.


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