Persimmon, Walnut and Pomegranate Salad by Alice Waters
January 14, 2018
This is an Alice Waters recipe out of The Art of Simple Food and it’s a total showstopper. I mean, how pretty is that? The trick is to make sure you get Fuyu persimmons (as opposed to Hachiya). Fuyu are round and squat, like a hot house tomato. Hachiya are more oval, like a Roma tomatoes. Hachiya taste bitter unless they are bordering on overripe. Fuyu are much more forgiving and the kind you want for this recipe.
The brilliant thing about The Art of Simple Food I and II, is that Alice Waters includes “variations” sections. In these sections, Alice describes another way you might do the recipe to make it your own. I’ve included that variations section below. In my rendition, I did not use the lettuce, but I did include the toasted walnuts.
- Cut the tops from and peel: 3 ripe medium fuyu persimmons
- Slice them thin or cut into small wedges, removing any seeds you find. Arrange the wedges on a plate.
- Hold, cut side down, over a bowl: 1/2 pomegranate
- Pound on the back of the fruit with a large spoon to dislodge the seeds. Pick out and discard any white pith that may have fallen out with the seeds. Sprinkle the seeds over the persimmon wedges.*
- For a simple vinaigrette, mix together: 1 tbsp sherry or red wine vinegar
- Fresh-ground black pepper
- Stir to dissolve the salt and then whisk in: 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Taste and correct the salt and acid as needed. Spoon the vinaigrette over the fruit and serve.
- Variation: Toss 4 small handfuls of lettuce with half the vinaigrette. (I prefer lettuces such as arugula, frisée, escarole, radicchio, or Belgian endive.) Arrange the lettuce on the plate and then arrange the fruit and nuts, if using, over the lettuce. Pour the rest of the vinaigrette over, and garnish with toasted walnuts.
*To make this step easier… and MUCH less messy… I buy pomegranate seeds from the grocery store, rather than the entire pomegranate.