Ah, well. My cry was heard! Here is the 2017 Haters Guide to the William Sonoma Catalogue (profane language alert). And the snow is really coming down now. And we decorated the wretched tree. So I guess Advent is over or something and now it’s Christmas. Oh well.
I like things to be orderly, a la Cold Comfort Farm. First one thing and then another thing. Advent all the way up to Christmas Eve and only then the holly jolly of the nativity. And everything very spare and clean and under exaggerated. So this is my Christmas Tree–it’s rosemary and gorgeous.
And here is everybody else’s.
They decorated it while I sat in a chair next to the fire and criticized them for doing it wrong. It’s so great to have older children. I didn’t have to get up once. And this year I’m not even going to bother to fix the big clump of ornaments in the middle. I’m just going to leave it, for authenticity’s sake.
Anyway, I think there are lots people drowning in Persimmons so I’m going to take the liberty of gifting (HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA) just kidding, Vouchsafing Unto You my grandmother’s, or maybe it’s my great grandmother’s Persimmon Pudding recipe. By pudding obviously I mean cake–rich, deep, profound cake. Persimmon Pudding is what I Wish Christmas Pudding could be. It hearkens to Christmas but it’s delicious instead of being weird and difficult. Plus, you can make it and eat it immediately. In fact, it’s best straight out of the oven, dark and steaming. I spent the whole week taking slices quietly off and toasting them in a pan and drizzling them with cream and trying to be alone. But once I wrongly timed my little ritual and all the children came in and wanted some and that was it. No more pudding for breakfast. Now I have a headache and feel sad.
So here’s the recipe as it was given to me. And I can attest to the fact that it works, and that, if you wanted the illusion of health, if that’s the kind of farce you like to keep up, you can replace the sugar with fake brown trulia/stevia, and the flour with einkorn. Don’t use that horrible Splenda stuff because it has an after taste and it will probably kill you. But if you use stevia use half of what’s called for because otherwise it will be way too sweat. The problem with using fake sugar and ancient einkorn is that you might eat the whole pudding thinking that it’s good for you, whereas, it is still cake, and if you eat the whole thing by yourself you will get fat, as I did this week. Sigh.
So, here’s what you need.
2/3 cup sugar, half brown, half white
1/2 cup melted butter or oil
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons warm water
2 ripe persimmons finely diced
3 tablespoons brandy
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 to 1 cup raisins
1 cup walnuts chopped
And here’s what you do.
Stir up the sugar and melted butter together. Mix in the flour, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg and add it to the sugar butter mixture. Dissolve the baking soda in the warm water and add that in. Mix the persimmons, brandy, and vanilla together and gently stir in to the batter. Beat the eggs and add them. And then finally the raisins and nuts. Bake in a loaf pan, or a beautiful molded pan really thoroughly buttered and floured or lined with parchment. Bake at 350 for about 40 minutes.
But don’t stop there.
You’ll need and want a rich translucent lemon sauce which you get by mixing together 2 tablespoons cornstarch, 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup orange juice, 2 tablespoons butter, 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest, and 3 tablespoons lemon juice.
Then you might as well just pour straight cream over that. I mean, I guess you could whip the cream but I actually like it better just drizzled over the lemon sauce over the pudding.
Of course, we won’t be eating this for Christmas because my mother made a proper Christmas Pudding, much to my alarm. She’s been pouring brandy over it when she remembers to, but it won’t make any difference because no matter how you slice it and how high the flames fly up, Christmas Pudding is not Persimmon Pudding. And now I guess I’ll go boil an egg because my sorrow, like the snow, is hurricane force. Pip pip.