Every year the persimmon tree branches bend to the ground from the weight of the heavy fruit they bear. When the persimmons peak with their deep orange colors, the whole tree looks like an autumn-decorated Christmas tree. This is also one of the trees that the birds enjoy feasting on. Their keen sense of smell allows them to always beat us to the ripest fruit on the tree. If we want to get to it first, we have to wake up early in the morning to pick the fruit that has ripened overnight. This is another of our favorite fruit desserts—it’s very simple and makes great use of supersoft ripe persimmon flesh. These are gloriously soft, moist cookies; the recipe was passed on from Todd’s grandmother’s recipe cards. Cranberries would be an excellent substitute for the raisins, and chocolate chips are another great addition—both suggestions from Todd’s mom.

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  • ½ cup (1 stick / 113g) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup (200g) sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup (240ml) fresh persimmon pulp
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 cups (250g) flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 cup (145g) raisins
  • 1 cup (120g) chopped nuts



  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F (165°C). Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Mix in the egg.
  3. In a separate bowl, mix together the persimmon pulp and baking soda. Add to the butter mixture and stir to combine.
  4. In another bowl, combine the flour, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves and whisk for 20 seconds. Gently stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Stir in the raisins and nuts. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. (Chilling the cookie dough at this point will result in fluffier cookies.)
  5. Drop spoonfuls of the dough on the prepared sheet pan. Keep the cookies small and far apart, as they spread out while baking. Bake for 15 to 18 minutes, or until set and light golden around the edges.