Friday, December 3, 2010

Don't squeeze my persimmons

Really. Don't. Don't be one of those uncouth people who walks past the persimmons and establishes their superiority by exercising the old opposable thumb trick. If they Fuyus, like mine, flat- or fat-bottomed (but not pointy) they are ripe when firm. Squeezing them achieves nothing. If they are pointy Hachiyas and near-brown and squooshy (and bear the thumb print of the entire hood), they are ripe.

For this frozen trick, regardless of cultivar, buy them unblemished and unpawed, bring them home and wait a week or perhaps two. You have to plan ahead. Then you will have soft, perfumed, instant, unbruised persimmon sorbet.

The schizophrenic Atlantic Fruit and Veg Japanese Grocery (what it says on the awning), what I call Mr Lee's, but called The New Green Pea in their Zagat listings, is selling large persimmons for 79c each. They are organic, which I am sure was accidental. No great distinction is made between conventional and organic here, and years and years ago I begged for organic milk, to be met with a non-committal smile. The milk did arrive, eventually, but that's about it for obvious organic, here, apart from the labeled accidental persimmons. Still, I visit every day because everything is very fresh from the big market.

If you would like to see actual persimmons on an actual tree in New York, visit the Liz Christy Community Garden on Houston* Street between the Bowery and 1st Avenue

[Tip for visitors, if you want to blend in: it ain't Hyooston Street, like the city. It's Howston.]

I have half a terrace to tidy and many pictures to sort, and Vincent has gone to be cracked by Dean Calakos, the wonderful $35 chiropractor who fixes my neck when it does its thing. I only had $30 on me last time so the Frenchie took my owed $5 with him, too. It's a quick, no nonsense business, and I have never been injured by him (terrified of chiropractors I am - is it time to tell the osteopath story and ask questions? Like, what adjustment e.x.a.c.t.l.y. is made by putting your man-hand between your female patient's legs and pressing up on the pelvic bone, while she faces a wall? After that I was told to sit on his hands. I am a bloody fool. I have been wondering for about 6 years and have felt too stupid to ask. I think he wanted to squeeze my persimmon...

* He was a garden design client, an osteopath in the West Village, and I mentioned that I had fallen down a staircase in a French chateau, all the way down - and then at the bottom a saddle fell on my head (a sign, surely, of things to come in that relationship) and had hurt my back. He said, Let me help! And then proceeded, I now think, to violate my person.

The end.


  1. "Honey, you're fine. You just got a kinky ol' groper!"

    That's a quote from a friend whose cousin had a similar experience.

    A good chiropractor is worth gold.

    Will I still blend in if I say Howston in an English accent? Hmm...Howston, we have a problem?

  2. MIT - Australian accent, methinks ? :-)

  3. "After that I had to sit on his hands"......O come on.
    Can I re-write that?
    After that I had to sit on his head, him facing the wall and I kicking his backside with my 6 inch heels. OK rewind. That is so kinky. You should have kicked his head in! Dirty old man.

  4. Definitely a dirty old man! A good chiropractor is worth his/her weight in gold, but I have never had anyone try to adjust.... amen, "there".

  5. Ha. Well, he wasn't old, and is very much in business. I checked. I am very, very sorry that I did not kick his head in.

  6. Donder. Dis ontstellend.

    Ivm die persimmons - ek voel so oor mense wat harde avokados pap druk. Ek moet bieg ek het nog nooit 'n persimmon gehad nie (!)

  7. I love love love persimmons. I haven't eaten the astringent variety in a long time. You definitely have to be patient when it comes to letting them ripen!

    The crunchy non-astringent types are my style.

  8. I finally ate my first (perfectly ripe) fuyu persimmon today. Some day i will try to dry a few, as per your directions. It was deliciously refreshing. And 'me too'- my acupuncturist. I was not the only one. Idiots.


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