We have had a bountiful season of cachi (persimmons) this year, as every other year. My parents persimmon tree yields a beautiful vanilla variety, the non-astringent with hard flesh that can be eaten like an apple, known as the Fuyu. Every season begins with much excitement and many bags are given to family and friends. Even so, we still manage to freeze a few when they become too ripe. When soft, they are great in smoothies, making sorbet, ice-cream and of course baking with. I however have never baked with them, always preferring to eat them as a fruit paired off with walnuts or sliced with oranges to counterbalance their sweetness.
What prompted me to photograph these persimmons and make this cake was seeing the very talented Sarah Schembri through her instagram account displaying some persimmons on a very very beautiful plate she had just made. I must confess that the desire to own the plate came well before that of wanting to make a rustic persimmon cake...such is my weakness! Sarah is a passionate potter and lover of food, so hopefully she will love this recipe too. She also runs pottery classes which one day I plan to book myself in.
Torta di Cachi e Noci (Persimmon & Walnut Cake)
Many of us have a favourite cake recipe that we use over and over again as a base and add various hero ingredients to create a different cake...well this is one of them. To this recipe I have added the ripe persimmons and walnuts. A lovely combination of autumn fruits that are harvested around the same time.
1 cup persimmon puree (the soft variety or well ripened fuyu mashed well with a fork)
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 cup self raising flour
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tsp each of allspice, cinnamon and baking powder
1 tsp of vanilla extract
1 cup chopped walnuts
Preheat the oven to 180 c, grease and line a 22 cm cake tin.
Beat sugar and eggs, adding the eggs one at a time. Add the oil and vanilla extract to the mixture and mix well.
In a separate bowl, sift and combine the flour, baking powder, allspice and cinnamon.
Add the flour mixture in three parts, beating at medium speed in between until well combined.
Finally fold in the persimmon puree and walnuts and pour into the cake tin and bake for 30 minutes or until cooked through.
Dust with powdered sugar and decorate with slices of persimmon.