Thursday, November 29, 2007

Tastier than Banana Bread

I don't like bananas. Give me something I don't know contains bananas, and I'll most likely gag (like the monkey-inspired beer at the Publick House). Thus, I'm not a fan of banana bread. Well, I have been known to devour slices of my roommate's Banana Love Bread (I named it that, because it was that good), but that's really an anomaly. Luckily, I've tweaked a recipe, using persimmons instead, resulting in a very similar, slightly spicier, and un-banana-y treat.

Persimmons seem to be the new "in" fruit, as there are recipes for them everywhere right now (like the 6 posts on Tastespotting in just a few days). They can be hard to find in markets, and can be even harder to find ripe. Eating an unripe persimmon can turn you off of them forever. So for this recipe, make sure they're soft and squishy before using. Scoop the flesh out and puree it in a food processor or by mashing it well to get the chunks out. Note that I made this in a flat 9x9 pan, not a loaf or bundt pan like typical banana breads, because the batter is very dense - it wouldn't cook otherwise.

Persimmon bread-cake

1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups ripe persimmon puree (about 3 fruit)
1/3 dark corn syrup
3 eggs
2 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp ground cloves
2 cups flour
1/3 cup boiling water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream brown sugar and butter in a large mixing bowl. Add persimmon puree, corn syrup, and eggs, and beat well. Add ginger, baking soda, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, and cloves and mix to incorporate. Finally mix in flour and boiling water alternately. Spray a 9 inch square baking pan with cooking spray; pour in batter. Bake for 30 minutes, until edges are brown and pulled away from the sides of the pan (the cake is sticky, so you can't test it with a toothpick).

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