Persimmons are an interesting little fruit: from the outside, they look somewhat like a partially ripe, orange-y tomato, but their taste is incongruous if you’re expecting that same tangy acidity. Unlike a tomato, persimmons are sweet and can taste almost like honey, while their texture is similar to that of an apple.
Native to East Asia, persimmons come in a few varieties, two of the most common being Hachiya and Fuyu. Shapewise, Fuyus bear the greatest resemblance to tomatoes, and are ideal for eating raw or as a raw addition to other dishes (particularly salads or salsas). Hachiyas, on the other hand, are more elongated and have pulp that’s great for use in baked goods. They can also be dried; dried Hachiya persimmons are referred to in Japanese as hoshigaki, and can be eaten as a snack by themselves, stuffed with nuts, or used as an ingredient in other foods or beverages.
Find both Hachiya and Fuyu varieties when in season, typically in the Fall.