Saturday, October 23, 2010

Pumpkin Crazy- Persimmon-Pumpkin Cookies

Headed out to our local fruit stand yesterday and everything just looked so good! See for yourself...

I love this place. They had farm fresh fruits and vegetables. Almonds, walnuts, chestnuts! Gourds and pumpkins galore! We had a lot of fun, we came home with bags of goodies and only spent $10!

As soon as we came home, I knew I wanted to make cookies. Persimmon cookies. But, not just persimmon cookies, PERSIMMON-PUMPKIN :) Persimmons already have a mild cinnamon flavor to them so pairing with pumpkin seemed ideal.

These cookies are absolutely delicious! I was really concerned the pumpkin would be overwhelming to the persimmon, but the proportions are just right to make a really mature flavor.

Persimmon-Pumpkin Cookies

4 persimmons
1 small baking pumpkin or 1/2 c of canned pumpkin
3 tsp baking soda
4 c flour
1 tsp (each) cinnamon, ground cloves, ground nutmeg, and salt
2 eggs
2 c sugar
1 c butter
2 c raisins
2 c finely chopped walnuts (optional of course)
  1. Pour your raisins into a small pot and just cover with water, give it a quick stir with a spoon to break the raisins apart. Turn to med heat, cover and simmer raisins for 25 min. Turn off the heat and add 1 tsp of baking soda to the water-raisins (adding the soda will make the mixture foam, this is a good sign. The baking soda/cooking helps to re-plump up the raisins for a softer cookie). Stir and let sit until somewhat cooled (approx 1 hour). 
  2. Meanwhile, quarter persimmons and puree until smooth and thick. If using canned pumpkin skip to step 3. If using fresh pumpkin, cut in half, remove seeds (keep seeds to roast!) and lay the pumpkin on a cookie sheet (cut side up). Bake at 350F for 40 min or until tender when touched with a fork. Remove roasted pumpkin from the oven and carefully scoop the pulp away from the skin. Place into a bowl and mash with a potato masher. 
  3. Mix persimmon puree with pumpkin puree (it's OK if fresh pumpkin is still warm), add remaining baking soda and let sit.
  4. In a large mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until fluffy. Beat in eggs one at a time. Mix in purees. 
  5. Most recipes have you sift, but instead I alternate when adding dry ingredients: 1 c flour, 1 tsp cloves, 1 c flour, 1 tsp nutmeg, 1 c flour, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 c flour, 1 tsp salt. Works for me, do whatever you are comfortable doing in you're own kitchen.
  6. Drain raisins really well and stir into dough. Stir in nuts.
  7. Drop by rounded teaspoons (the rounder the top, smoother looking the cookie) onto un-greased cookie sheets for 15-17mins or until edges are slightly brown. Let sit 5 min and cool completely on wire racks.
Makes 36 cookies. 
Remember to get creative with your pumpkins this week!

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