Amagaki persimmons Twin Peaks Returns
Fuyu front right, Amagaki front left, and three stages of ripe Hachiyas in the back.
Hat tip to Figs and Bri for the Photo
"The Amagaki is truly amazing. Not quite as succulent and velvety as the Hachiya, its flesh is crisper (similar to the Fuya but juicier) with a sweet and cinnamony flavor that finishes teasing of nutmeg.
More yellow than red-orange, when I first saw one, I wondered if it was an abnormal Fuya or Hachiya with a birth defect. The flesh contains brownish filaments, don’t worry, they’re a normal component and they are your prize!
According to Carol Iwasaki of Twin Peaks Orchards, Twin Peaks is the only farm in California that grows the true Hykume persimmon variety. (OK, throwing another new name at you!) The Hykume is similar to the Hachiya in that it can’t be eaten raw; you have to wait until it is very, very ripe due to its bitterness.
Carol explained her dad took over the farm when he was 13 due to the death of his father. They’d been growing Hykume persimmons for 50 to 60 years at that point and experimenting with a curing process to allow earlier eating of the variety. He came up with a special curing procedure that made it possible to eat Hykumes after 10 days. When he bit into the Hykume, it was so juicy and sweet, he changed the name to Amagaki (Japanese translation is “sweet persimmon”). Five different families, all descendents of Carol’s father, still own and operate this Newcastle farm today.
Twin Peaks grows a large quantity of Amagaki and sells them to larger produce dealers. One in particular calls them cinnamon persimmons and sells them as such.
I hope you’ll taste an Amagaki while in season!"