I discovered a new fruit the other day.
The persimmon ( Diospyros sp.) is alleged to taste like apricot; I find it similar but not identical. And I like it better. Much better, so much that I am now plotting to buy my own tree or two, raising them myself; read the end of this post for more info.
The type I bought was an Asian persimmon (Fuyu) being sold at Whole Foods. This is the most available commercially. It looked like a somewhat-off tomato. I picked up a couple and decided what to do with them…
I had some skirt steak, which is a type of beef that lends itself to stir fries (as well as fajitas, of course), and I needed to cook it. Hopping around my fridge, I discovered the other ingredients that went into my tasty stir fry. This is one of those dishes best to be inventive with – what’s on hand? I’m writing this one up, because I’m glad I added the persimmon. (I tasted a small piece raw, too – very good that way as well, although the sign at Whole Wallet said that if not quite ripe, they can be astringent. I think my purchases were ripe.)
At my farmers’ market, I found bok choy, and bought a bunch of a purple-leafed baby bok choy. I’m sure there’s a more proper name for the purple leafed variety, but it wasn’t labelled at the farm stand. If someone knows, I’d appreciate the information. (The photo isn’t any good, so you’ll find it at the end of this post.) In any case, if you are looking for ideas, any baby bok choy or similar leafy brassica can be used.
Cook Time: 10 – 15 minutes
Rest Time: not much
Skirt Steak, Persimmon, Bok Choy, Mushroom and Scallion Stir Fry
- 6-8 ounces skirt steak, sliced
- 1 persimmon, stem removed, diced
- Baby bok choy, chopped – separate the stems from the leaves since you will add them into the stir fry separately.
- 3 button mushrooms, or preferably, more. Chopped.
- 1 green scallion, chopped – separate the thick white area from the flat greens since you will add them into the stir fry separately.
- 1.5 tablespoon GF teriyaki sauce
- 1 tablespoon GF low sodium soy sauce (or sub in GF low sodium “dumpling sauce”)
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder. (I really really like Trader Joe’s, grown in California.)
- 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper, white or black
- 1/3 teaspoon Chinese 5-spice powder
- About a tablespoon of avocado oil (or other healthy high temp cooking oil).
Prep all of the above, and set your skillet on the range or cooktop at medium high.
When a drop of water makes the oil sizzle, add the mushrooms and the whites of the scallion. Allow the mushroom to cook to softness, about three minutes. Stir gently.
Add the stems of the bok choy. If you like your meat more well done, add your meat now. Or wait two or three more minutes. Stir.
And then, if you are like me and like to see a little pink, add that meat at this later point. Stir.
Add all the condiments and seasonings immediately after the meat, and continue stirring gently. Watch the meat to see that it gets to your preferred level of done-ness.
When you are about ready, top with the rest of the bok choy, and the green part of the scallion, and stir another minute or two, until the green leafy bits of bok choy slightly wilt.
Remove from heat and serve it up!
This would be great served up with a side of white yam noodles (heated in broth). If you are eating grains, rice noodles are a speedy option, too.
Afterthoughts on Persimmon: I am so enamored of the persimmon that I am now planning on growing one or two persimmon trees next year. I’ve investigated the Internet, and apparently there are three overall types of persimmon tree: the native American persimmon (hardy from zones 4 to 9, requiring both male and female trees to bear fruit), the Japanese/Asian persimmon (Fuyu or Hachiya varieties, one tree only required), which can’t stand freezes, and a “Magic Fountain” weeping persimmon (hardy from zones 5-9, and self-fertile). I am leaning towards this new-fangled weeping persimmon, to plant as a fruit-bearing accent piece in my front yard – because, well, weeping… and because I won’t need to drag it into a greenhouse with the citrus trees, as with the Japanese varieties. Although I’ll also consider adding a couple of the regular American persimmon trees to my back yard.
And the second persimmon I bought? I am planning to put it in a salad, much like one would a tomato.