Printer Friendly

Give gifts of the season.

Turn shiny persimmons, glossy chestnuts, and exotic mushrooms into arrangements to admire first and eat later

THREE GREAT EDIBLES of fall--Fuyu persimmons, chestnuts, and wild and cultivated mushrooms--make elegant, original gifts when presented in handsome containers with lavish bows. Not only are they delightful to look at, but if you include some simple instructions for cooking, the presentations can be converted to good eating.


Present flat-bottomed, firm Fuyu-type persimmons and a few almonds in the shell in an attractive shallow baking dish. Include a bag of homemade streusel mix (directions follow). Instruct the recipient to refrigerate the mix while enjoying the beauty of the fall arrangement.

The fruit can be eaten anytime, but when it begins to soften (in 1 to 2 weeks), it's time to slice it into the baking dish, top with the streusel, and bake persimmon crisp for breakfast or dessert.

Persimmon Crisp

Thinly slice enough Fuyu-type persimmons into 1- to 1 1/2-quart baking dish to fill the dish to the rim. (If you have more than 4 cups fruit, mix in sugar to taste.) Squeeze streusel topping (recipe follows) to form lumps and scatter over fruit. Bake in a 375 |degrees~ oven until topping is well browned, 45 to 50 minutes. Serve hot or cool; scoop into bowls and top with eggnog or sweetened softly whipped cream.

Streusel topping. Mix 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, and 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg. With your fingers or a pastry cutter, rub or cut 6 tablespoons firm butter or margarine into flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in 1/3 cup chopped almonds or walnuts. Seal in a plastic bag; store in refrigerator up to 1 month.


Package chestnuts, a bottle of madeira (malmsey, dry or sweet), and perhaps a chestnut knife or other short-bladed knife in a good-looking shallow pan.

Roasted Chestnuts with Madeira

With a small, sharp knife, cut an X through the shell on the flat side of each chestnut. Place nuts in a single layer in a shallow pan. Roast in a 400 |degrees~ oven until nuts are mealy in center when broken open, 20 to 30 minutes.

Using thick napkins as protection, crack roasted nuts 1 at a time between your hands; pull off the shell and thin skin inside. Eat chestnuts while sipping madeira.


Select whole, fresh-looking mushrooms such as hedge-hog, matsutake, portabella, oyster, chanterelle, and shiitake. Arrange unrinsed mushrooms in a towel-lined basket; garnish with greenery such as fresh rosemary or thyme sprigs. Let stand at room temperature up to 24 hours.

Or enclose the mushrooms in towels, seal in plastic bags, and store in the refrigerator 2 or 3 days.

Forest Mushroom Saute

Brush or trim off caked-on debris from mushrooms. Quickly immerse a few mushrooms at a time in cool water, shaking them gently to help dislodge any debris or insects. Lift out, shake gently, and drain on towels. Cut off and discard woody or tough stems and damaged areas. Check mushrooms for tiny holes and cut into them to trim out any insects. Leave small mushrooms whole, or slice or chop them all.

In a 10- to 12-inch frying pan, melt 2 tablespoons butter or margarine. Add enough cleaned whole or cut mushrooms to fill pan to a depth of 1 1/2 inches. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned (most mushrooms exude liquid; cook until it evaporates). Add salt, pepper, and fresh rosemary to taste. Serve as a vegetable or add to any dish desired. If made ahead, seal sauteed mushrooms airtight and refrigerate up to 2 days; freeze to store longer.
COPYRIGHT 1993 Sunset Publishing Corp.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1993 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:includes recipes
Author:Anusasananan, Linda Lau
Date:Nov 1, 1993
Previous Article:Burritos and Thai salad cure those leftover turkey blues.
Next Article:Wild reminiscences of first Thanksgivings.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2017 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters