Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Autumn Fruit

Last year, we arrived in Masan on November 6th and everything in Korea was new and exciting. The streets had a mixture of Asian and American influences and the leaves on the mountains were turning a golden shade. We are now back in the swing of Autumn and Samgye is looking fresh and beautiful. The weather has cooled down over night. The summer heat has given way to warm afternoon sun and chilly evening air and everyone is breathing a sigh of relief as the humidity of summer has come to an end. When Autumn arrives, I always start to reminisce about harvest festival at primary school. It was fun taking mini hamper baskets to all the old people and generally enjoying the conker fights, pumpkin carving and leaf throwing in the cool weather...all wrapped up and lots of fun to be had!

In Korea, the season comes to an end so rapidly that leaves fall off the trees over night and the bitterly cold weather will be here in no time. The window of opportunity is only short lived, but at the start of October you begin to see the seasonal changes on the market stalls. One orange delight is the persimmons fruit (or Sharon fruit as it is known in the UK).

Before Korea, I had never seen one of these sweet treats. Persimmons look like an orange tomato, but they have a very unique texture on the inside. The squishy pulp is almost jelly-like. There is so much juice in the ripe ones that you almost have to use the skin like a cup. Last year my coworkers threw away the skin like you would a kiwi, but it is edible and I quite like eating the whole thing. This can be messy!  The orange really makes me feel filled with the spirit of Autumn!  Seriously delicious seasonal produce. Why not give the persimmons a whirl!

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