My curiosity got the best of me. There is this tree, on the side of the road in front of the house, that has been there since we have....15 years now:) I have never figured out what kind of tree this was, until I saw a magazine with a picture resembling it. Sure enough...I walk out to the tree and it is a persimmon tree. What? We actually have a Korean Mango tree? Who knew? I examine the fruit that had fell off and yes, it was a persimmon. A beautiful fruit. Picturesque indeed! My mouth salivates and I take a bite. OMG!!! BITTER is not the word.
Apparently I've never ate a persimmon before:) Nor will I ever again!
I google it...trying to see if they are edible. Yes you can eat them, depending on whether you get a hold of an astringent or non-astringent persimmon, and if the tannins have had time to weaken so when you bite into one, your tongue doesn't stick to the roof of your mouth. It's like eating the bitter part of a pecan...except worse...much, much worse. So much for the cancer fighting agents it supposedly contains.....'cause guess what?
Unripened persimmons contain the soluble tannin shibuol, which, upon contact with a weak acid, polymerizes in the stomach and forms a gluey coagulum that can affix with other stomach matter. The Merck Manual of Diagnosis and Therapy notes that consumption of persimmons has been known to cause bezoars that require surgery in over 90% of cases. More than 85% phytobesoars are caused by ingestion of unrippened persimmons. Persimmon bezoars often occur in epidemics in regions where the fruit is grown. Horses may develop a taste for the fruit growing on a tree in their pasture and overindulge also, making them quite ill. It is often advised that persimmons should not be eaten with crab meat, nor should they be eaten on an empty stomach.
I should read the fine print before ingesting:) If you hear of me in the hospital for surgery on my colon to remove bezoars......
Now you know:)
P.S. I hear the wood is kin to ebony....I think I'll get Hubby to chop it down and make me a magazine rack I've had my eye on at PotteryBarnKids.com. It's no good to me if I can't eat of it:)