My wife is on the East Coast for FruitGuys business, and I’m flying solo. My teen and preteen zombies, formerly known as my children, start rising at 5:45 every morning and usually grunt through the breakfast routine. I’m surprised when my daughter raises an eyebrow (complex motor skills aren’t usually seen at this hour) and asks: “Dad?” “Yes,” I say, while my daughter watches me make a peanut butter and honey sandwich for her lunch. “Um,” she says, looking as I cut the bread less than symmetrically, “when’s Mom coming back?” She smiles. “Here,” I say, grabbing an orange piece of fruit from our case, “Fuyu.”
It must be fall because Fuyu persimmons are back in our mixes. (No, those squat orange things you see in your case are not tomatoes, but lovely and wonderful Fuyus for you!) Fuyus are one of two common types of persimmon. The other is the Hachiya, which we don’t put into our cases. Hachiyas are acorn-shaped pieces of fruit that are definitely not meant to be eaten firm, as they are astringent until they turn mushy. When soft, they taste like sweet fall persimmon pudding.
Fuyus are the only persimmons you’ll see in The FruitGuys’ cases. I eat them like apples—firm, and with a bit of snap. They are tasty and full of vitamins A and C. Their orange color is an indicator of the presence of beta carotene. According to the FDA’s Daily Value guidelines, a large Fuyu persimmon can have as much as 70% of your daily vitamin A requirement, which is pretty darn good.
Persimmons are picked hard and ripen slowly at room temperature. Fuyus can be eaten in various stages of ripeness: from just slightly soft to very soft. Although I don’t usually recommend peeling fruit because that’s where many nutrients reside, I waffle on the Fuyu—some don’t like the naturally waxy exterior, while others love the crunchy texture and sweet infusion it adds. Try a taste with the skin on, and if you don’t like it, peel it. They can be eaten whole, quartered, cut like apple wedges, or sliced into rounds (and keep an eye out, as they sometimes contain a seed or two). The taste will be a very fall-flavored mix of light nutmeg and pumpkin spice. Erik, our COO, and triathlete madman says that he eats the Fuyu for the wonderful aftertaste: “It leaves your mouth refreshed like cantaloupe sorbet.”
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