Persimmons a good source of beta-carotene

Dec. 24, 2012 at 2:37 AM

SAN DIEGO, Dec. 24 (UPI) -- The persimmons, a seasonal bright orange fruit, is a good source of beta-carotene, vitamin C and potassium, a U.S. nutritionist says.

"Fuyu persimmons are firm when ripe and you can eat them like an apple," Vicky Newman, director of the Nutrition Services, Cancer Prevention & Control Program at the University of California, San Diego, Moores Cancer Center, said in a statement.

"But the most widely available variety of persimmon is the Hachiya -- or Japanese persimmon -- which has a smooth, creamy texture. Unripe Hachiyas are extremely bitter until fully soft and ripe."

Since the persimmons could be messy, try cutting a Hachiya in half and and eating it from the skin with a spoon, Newman suggested.

"Hachiya persimmons are also great in baked goods and persimmon pudding cakes that start out a luscious bright orange and come out of the oven a rich deep brown," Newman said. "Reminiscent of holiday plum pudding, this dessert is best served warm right from the oven."

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