Disclaimer: sponsored post ahead (but a VERY good recipe as well!)

I’ve been through Spain in the past and thought that I had tried many of their local delicacies. But I realized recently that I’ve never had persimmons before – up until this year, to me they were just these pretty little fruits that sat in the exotic fruits section at Loblaws. Earlier this month I received some Persimons  and was asked to bake something nice with them. So, I'm here to share with you my baking experience with these beautiful bright orange fruits, and to tell you about a special contest to win a one week trip for 2 to Valencia, Spain - home of the Persimon! To qualify, check out this link. 

Anyways, before I begin, here is a couple fun facts about this particular variety persimmons: 

- You may note that the spelling is different; this is intentional and the name was changed to differentiate this specific variety from Ribera del Xúquer near Valencia, Spain. These persimons are different in that they don't need to be ripened before eating. This means they are ready to eat the moment you buy them. 
- The flavour of Persimons are sweet and similar to a peach or a mango.
- They are available to Canadians from October to January! So you still have time to go and pick some up before the season ends.

So, for my first foray into Persimon baking and cooking, I chose to make some persimon brownies to share with you! They are delicious and REALLY easy. 

PERSIMON BROWNIES

Jam

1 Persimon®, peeled and chopped
? cup (150 mL) sugar
1 tsp (5 mL) lemon juice

Brownie

½ cup (125 mL) unsalted butter
5 oz. (150 g) bittersweet chocolate (70%)
? cup (150 mL) granulated sugar
¼ cup (50 mL) Persimon® jam
3 large eggs
1 pinch of salt
1 tsp (5 mL) vanilla
¾ cup (175mL) all-purpose flour

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).

Jam

Place the chopped Persimon® in the bowl of a food processor and puree until smooth. Pour the puree into a saucepan. Add sugar and lemon juice stirring slowly over medium low heat until the consistency of jam. Approx. 5 minutes. Set aside. 

N.B. I had some difficulty achieving a thick, jam-like consistency while continually stirring, but once I left it reach a certain heat, it became thicker. I then stirred it a bit, took it off heat and let it cool a bit before combining it with the chocolate brownie mix (step reached below). 

Brownie

Grease an 8 X 8 inch (20cm) baking pan and line bottom with parchment paper, leaving a 1 inch (2.5cm) overhang on two sides. Place butter and dark chocolate in a sauce pan over low heat and melt until smooth. Add sugar and stir until dissolved. Add the Persimon® jam, stir and remove from heat.

In a large mixing bowl, beat eggs with a pinch of salt and vanilla until slightly foamy. Add sifted flour and blend until just incorporated. Being careful not to over mix. Pour the brownie batter into the baking pan. 

N.B: It wasn't specified in the original recipe, but at this point you must mix chocolate/persimon blend with the eggs/flour blend.
N.B: It wasn't specified in the original recipe, but at this point you must mix chocolate/persimon blend with the eggs/flour blend.

Bake for 30 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean. Remove from the oven and spread the remaining Persimon® jam over the top of the brownie while it is still hot. Allow to cool completely before cutting into 2 inch squares.

Makes 9 servings

Source: www.persimonsays.com

Welcome to my new blog! I shut down my old one and decided it needed a new revamping. There is a lot of work left to do, help but I’m glad I finally did it.

While I don’t normally believe in New Years Resolutions, about it I wanted to make an effort to be more creative in 2014. This meant allowing myself access to hobbies and situations that helped foster and flourish creativity. I’ve painted, been drawing, listening to music and contemplating picking up the flute again, and EVEN thinking about taking Hip Hop classes — writing is just another one that I know I can do, and will easily help get my creative juices flowing. 

Here goes nothing!

Anita

By walking I found out
Where I was going.

By intensely hating, viagra how to love.
By loving, sick whom and what to love.

By grieving, how to laugh from the belly.

Out of infirmity, I have built strength.
Out of untruth, truth.

From hypocrisy, I wove directness.

Almost now I know who I am.
Almost I have the boldness to be that man.
 

Another step
And I shall be where I started from.

 
- Irving Layton

You know when you imagine and hope for certain things in your life? For some it may be the promise of a beautiful wedding and an everlasting love. Or a career and a social reputation that lives on throughout the ages. For me, troche it has always been to have a life full of love, site good food and good conversation — the stuff Woody Allen films are made of (including the over-scrutinization of relationships and their nuances). But there is this little thing that happens, doctor where your idealism often doesn’t align with your reality and causes intense unhappiness as a result — the Germans call it Weltzschmerz (or mental depression or apathy caused by comparison of the actual state of the world with an ideal state). I think after the last 5 months of my life, I no longer suffer from Weltschmerz. 

In early May I hosted my first dinner party at my house. It was filled with a collection of some of my most interesting friends and was full of beautiful conversation and love — just as I had always dreamt. I made food strictly from Yotam Ottolenghi’s famous Israeli cookbook, Jerusalem. It was a night I feel like I had been waiting for for nearly most my life, and while it was a beautiful night, it made me reflect heavily on where I have been in the last year. 

I’m coming up close to one year since the flood happened. On July 8th, 2013, I was living in a small, crummy basement apartment in the Annex in Toronto and just barely surviving. Flip-flopping on where I wanted to go with my career (to law or not to law? That was the question. #Existential life crisis.); I was in a relationship that wasn’t meant for me at all, with someone who was much more detached than one person should be, and I never in my wildest dreams thought I would be here, right now, where I am today. At that moment I really felt that all the things I had hoped and longed for would never come to fruition; that I was doomed to always be marred by Weltschmerz for the rest of my days.

Following the flood I had to flee back to my father’s house. It was a devastating and depressing time for me, having lost thousands of dollars worth of items from books to cherished letters and love notes (I’m a sentimental old fool!), and having to go back home feeling like my triumphant departure from Caledon (and a house that is rife with negativity and hurt from the last 13 years) was ill-fated. Now I am here, in my new place — that I own, having traveled, in a new relationship — all this is unbelievably fulfilling, and I’m surrounded by old and new friends who mirror my exact values, desires and hopes. 

This is both a thank you and a love note. I want to thank everyone who has been a part of my journey for the last year. I have met some of the most amazing people, loved in ways that I never thought I could, tested resolve I wasn’t aware that I had, and persevered in a way that I am sure would make my Mother proud. I’m so thankful for the beauty and love that I have allowed to enter in when I could have so easily gone the other way. Following my Mum’s passing in 2001, I was forced to learn detachment through release of spiritual self and fear of death, but immediately turned to materials and possessions. 12 years following that, I was forced to recognize the transient nature of material objects - once again throwing me for a loop. But through having the people I had around me (especially my sister, as always) I was strong enough to make it here, to understand that it’s about the here, the now, the present. 

I am filled with joy, gratitude and understanding — I understand the hard-gotten joys and I appreciate every fibre and every iota. I love with abandon and open myself up to every person I meet. I have become a conduit for love and I can only thank those around me for filling me up with so much of it. Without you there is no me; I’d fade into in-existence. 

Thank you for loving and believing in me. 

Anita