Speck-Wrapped Grilled Persimmon. This is one of those “on the menu” items that made me think “I could do that”. I saw the whole recipe in my head without even having to see the presentation. That’s partly because I’m a big Judy Rodgers fan. Not that I spied this tasty little tidbit at Zuni Cafe. No, the inspiration came from Local Kitchen + Wine Bar in Santa Monica, CA.
Still, I have to give the late Ms. Rodgers some of the credit because it was her opinion (in her 2002 cookbook) that speck is to persimmon as prosciutto is to fig that convinced me this grilled persimmon recipe couldn’t help but be a winner.
Speck or Prosciutto
Which might be slicing the pig a little too closely for some folks. After all, at its most elemental speck is prosciutto that is laced with spices like juniper and bay leaves and then smoked and/or dry-aged. You can see how the spice would work nicely with persimmon and the salt cure typical to prosciutto would be better suited to a sweeter, more succulent fruit such as fig.
Still, the internet is littered with folks who think otherwise. Google the combination of “persimmon and prosciutto” and you’ll find plenty of cheerleaders – though not too many of these examples feature grilled persimmon. So I’ve got that going for my version
I did find an Aida Mollenkamp recipe at Food52 for Speck-Wrapped Persimmons. Though her version is not grilled it does prove that I’m not the only cook out there who still reads The Zuni Cafe Cookbook as if it were gospel. GREG