They sure look strange, but they are so incredible to munch on. Called hoshigaki, and an old Japanese culinary tradition brought to northern California by immigrant Japanese farmers in the early part of this century, they are on the Slow Food USA Ark of Taste list of endangered foods. Why endangered? Because the time and skill required to grow and make them has limited their commercial appeal and availability to big food sellers. Each year fewer and fewer of the old timers make these. We are hoping to draw attention to this tradition and keep it alive.
Each farmer has their own secret technique and style for making these, but all are first hand peeled and hung to dry outside and massaged by hand daily for around a month until they are the perfect consistency. Some farmers dry them more than others so they each have a different consistency from farm to farm.
Since 2007 we have purchased about 50 lbs from one organic farmer, who has been making these as a hobby for over 20 years. He doesn't dry them out as much as most farmers do. These are still soft and orange inside, with the chewy, soft consistency of dried dates, and a delicious, delicate persimmon flavor, accentuated by the light dusting of natural fruity flavored white sugar that the massaging brings to the surface.
Available in limited supply in November and December. Packaged in a biodegradable cellophane bag.
1 lb dried, massaged, organic Hachiya persimmons (about 8 pieces) $36.
We cannot ship these until Dec. 14, so keep that in mind with holiday orders. If you want you can buy them seperately and they will ship later if you need to order jam now.