Thursday, September 18, 2008

Why I Love Asian Markets

So this weekend past, Sean and I hit up the Asian markets in Fairfax - one of my particular favorites is Lotte on Fairfax Circle. It's the size of a Safeway, and it's always so much fun to see all the things you have no idea how to use (or would really want to?). Who knew aloe (yes, the sunburn treatment) was a popular beverage flavor in China, or that acorn jelly is a delicious Korean treat?

Anyway, I've always loved Asian markets for their cheap and unique produce. From giant king oyster mushrooms to banana flowers to huge clumps of fresh herbs for a dollar-a-piece, they can be a culinary wonderland. And this weekend was no exception, where I wound up buying tons of stuff that I'm still trying to figure out what all to do with.

I got a bunch of in-season Fuyu persimmons and I'd never used them before. And in making the puree (see below) I got to use my new Cuisinart food processor (it's the little things in life...) So here's a good recipe... because you never really know what to expect on my blog!

Persimmon Cookies
2 ripe persimmons, pureed
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup butter
1 cup raisins (I prefer to leave out)
1 cup chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 F. Dissolve baking soda in persimmon pulp and set aside. Sift flour, spices and salt together, set aside. Cream together butter or margarine and sugar until fluffy, beat in egg and persimmon. Stir in dry ingredients. Stir in nuts and/or raisins. Drop by spoonfuls onto greased cookie sheet. Bake for 15 minutes.

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