Confession time: I tried my first persimmon about a week ago. One of my favorite things about Cook Baker Cocktail Maker is the challenge of making recipes with new ingredients and growing my culinary skills. All this experimentation paid off with this classy salad that finely balances sweet, bitter, tart, and creamy. For those of you who are also persimmon novices, there are two common types of persimmons: hachiya and fuyu. Hachiya are acorn-shaped and not ripe until mushy (best for baking), and fuyu are squat and donut-shaped, and firm like an apple (hello, salad town).
The ginger syrup I used in this recipe comes from Raft Cocktails. As you may know, we’re big fans of their simple syrups and bitters. We are always experimenting with blurring the lines between cocktail making, baking, and cooking. This recipe shows just how versatile a high-quality simple syrup can be.
4 fuyu persimmons, thinly sliced
½ head radicchio, cut into 3 inch pieces
4 small heads endive, cut into 3 inch pieces
1 shallot, finely minced
½ cup red wine vinegar
½ cup olive oil
2 tablespoons Raft ginger syrup
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
½ teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly cracked black pepper
½ cup pomegranate seeds
¼ cup crumbled goat cheese (I used a fantastic smoked goat cheese)
Flaky sea salt for finishing
Combine sliced persimmons, radicchio, and endive in a large mixing bowl. In a jar, combine shallot, red wine vinegar, olive oil, ginger syrup, mustard, kosher salt, and pepper to taste. Tightly seal the lid, put on some dancing tunes, and shake that baby. You’ll know you're done when the dressing is nicely emulsified and doesn’t separate. Toss the salad mixture with just enough dressing to coat the leaves. You’ll probably have some leftover dressing, and luckily it will already be in a handy storage jar for your future salad needs! Plate the salad prettily and top with more fresh pepper, pomegranate seeds, goat cheese crumbles, and flaky salt. Tadah! Serve as an appetizer or with your meal and feel like you’re eating at a high-end restaurant, without leaving home.