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IT’S ALMOST TIME FOR THE BIG DINNER, SO THIS MONTH WE SAT DOWN WITH OUR ‘NOURISH’ CURATOR BARRETT PRENDERGAST OF VALLEYBRINK ROAD FAME. BEFORE FARM-TO-TABLE WAS A THING AND WILD FLOWERS TRUMPED ROSES, THERE WAS BARRETT AND HER FRESH TAKE ON THE YUMMIES. READ ON TO COOK, DECORATE AND GIFT A SEASONAL INGREDIENT THAT ISN’T AS ENIGMATIC AS IT SEEMS. DROOL.
So what’s the ingredient that Barrett’s talking about? Persimmons.
“Persimmons feel a little unexpected to me. You always see apples, pears, pomegranates, and pumpkins this time of year but the persimmon is such a beautiful addition, both for decor and to eat! Its bright orange color adds the perfect pop and its subtle sweetness is a wonderful addition to so many dishes. Also, the petite size of the persimmon lends nicely to decor and gifting. You can place it in a gift box or use them throughout a tablescape.”
First up, Barrett’s favorite recipe for persimmons-
Little Gem Salad with Persimmon, Radish, and Pomegranate
This salad is all about the color and the crunch. Often times fall and winter recipes can be so heavy, but this salad is light and bright, a perfect compliment to some of the richer dishes you might serve at this time of year. The sweetness of the persimmon and pomegranate go well with the spice of the arugula and radish. And, the tangy vinaigrette brings it all together.
White Balsamic Vinaigrette
1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
juice from 1/2 lemon
First, make the dressing. Place all the vinaigrette ingredients into a tupperware container or jar and shake until emulsified. Set aside.
1-2 little gem lettuces (they are often called baby romaine heads), leaves removed, rinsed and dried
1 cup arugula
1 fuyu persimmon, top removed, sliced into thin wedges
1 watermelon radish, thinly sliced into rounds on a mandolin
1 scallion, thinly sliced into rounds
1 carrot, peeled into thin strips
1/3 cup pomegranate seeds
1 fennel bulb, outer part removed, thinly sliced on a mandolin
In a large mixing bowl, start layering all of the salad ingredients. Once everything is in the mixing bowl, slowly drizzle the dressing on top. Season with sea salt and black pepper and mix with your hands to coat.
Serve immediately and enjoy!
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