Persimmon, Chèvre and Basil Pizza

Persimmons are an excellent source of Vitamin C, not to mention they are down right tasty. When fully ripened they are juicy, sweet and almost have a ginger-like spiciness to them. It's one of the tastiest fruits to thwart cold and flue season with. Enjoy this pizza with an off-dry Viogner. The variety is typically a balance between the orchard and the garden: think notes of jasmine and peach. Honeysuckle and apricot are also common. The variety is perfect for Chèvre or almost any double or triple cream.

Pizza Toppings

  • 2 over ripe fuyu persimmon
  • 8 ounces Chèvre
  • 1 tablespoon fresh basil
  • Extra virgin olive oil

Persimmon Types

Commercially speaking, there are two types of persimmons: the hachiya variety and the fuyu variety. Hachiya persimmons are heart-shaped and need to over ripen before eating. They taste kinda furry otherwise. This variety is perfect for baking with. Fuyu persimmons can be eaten just like an apple.

When persimmons are harvested, they are simply clipped above the calyx--the fruit's outer flower. The calyx is pictured above. it's the green dried-out looking leaves on top of the fruit. As the fruit ripens, removing the calyx is quite simple.

Pizza Dough

  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh yeast (or 1/2 t. active dry yeast)
  • 3/4 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup tepid water
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt

1. In a large mixing bowl add the water then whisk in the yeast and olive oil.

2. Let the mixture stand for a few minutes.

3. Add the flour, mix into a homogenous ball.

4. Cover the mixture with a damp towel and let stand for 20 minutes.

5. Knead in the salt thoroughly.

Rising Pizza Dough© Kevin Schuder

6. Separate into 3 equal portions, place on a floured tray and lightly cover with plastic wrap. Let it sit at room temperature for 4 hours until it each ball has doubled in size.

7. Heat the baking sheet on your oven's highest temperature for 30 minutes

Shaping Pizza Dough© Kevin Schuder

3. Shape the dough by tapping the center to deflate it. Stretch it by pressing it with your fingers away from the center.

Shaping Pizza Dough© Kevin Schuder

4. Grab it along the edges and turn it like you would a steering wheel and let gravity stretch it for you. The trick is to grab the very edge so it is not paper thin in the middle nor very thick at the edge. Give the dough a final stretch with the back of your hands if the shape or thickness still needs some correction.

Tossing and Shaping Pizza Dough© Kevin Schuder

7. Set the unbaked crust on the parchment paper and place in the oven. After 3 minutes, remove it and coat it with olive oil. Then add the persimmon slices and chèvre. Bake until pizza crust is golden. Finish with basil.

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Persimmon, Chèvre and Basil Pizza
Persimmons aren't just for cookies and baked good. The fruit, which is extremely high in Vitamin C, also makes a great Fall pizza. This could very well be the tastiest way to fight off a cold.

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