Sunday, March 22, 2009
Fellow blogger Tatania posted on her Persimmon tree the very day I saw these orange fruits selling in our Asian grocery store. When I was little, I always associated this fruit in its dried form as SHIH PIAN.
The Chinese dry them and usually are plentifull during Chinese New Year. I never liked them, and they were given to me in place of lollies. Dad told me that these little fruits are the saving stars to millions of chinese children. Many of the peasant women had to work in the fields and could not breastfeed their babies. In place of milk, the persimmon fruits were cooked in rice gruel and mashed up and fed to babies.
More than twenty years ago, in Auckland, New Zealand when Deborah was little, a neighbour had a whole lot of persimmon trees in his garden. The trees were ladened with giant orange fruits. I asked the eldery neighbour what they were, and he told me Persimmon and he gave me a big paper bag of them. They were very big and he told me to ripen them at the window sill. Perhaps I left them too ripe. They became mushy and I didn't like them.
In Singapore, they import them from Israel. My husband's family like them, and we used to buy crates for them, as they were not available in Malaysia. In his later year, Dad craved for them, and I would buy them in crates when I went to visit him in Sarawak.
These ones in the photograph are probably from USA, as Titania says they are ripening now. These ones are not very big. Two years ago, around this time, during a visit to Rotorua, we saw immature fruits.