Chez Panisse Persimmon Pudding
For one 8-inch or 9-inch pudding: About 1½ pounds persimmons • 1¼ cups flour • 1/8 teaspoon salt • ¾ teaspoon baking soda • ¾ teaspoon baking powder • 1 teaspoon cinnamon • ¾ cup sugar • 3 eggs • 1 ½ cups milk • ¼ cup whipping cream • 1 tablespoon honey • 1 cup walnuts or mixed walnuts and black walnuts • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
The persimmon should be completely soft when they are ripe, and the flesh should look translucent and a little like jelly. Scrape the pulp off the peel and put through a strainer, or puree in a blender or food processor. Mix the flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl. Combine the persimmon pulp, sugar, eggs, milk, cream, and honey. Gradually stir the liquid mixture into the flour mixture. It will be thin at first but will thicken quickly. Let the batter stand to thicken.
Lightly toast the walnuts 5 to 6 minutes in a preheated 350° oven; then let them cool. Butter an 8-inch or 9-inch springform pan and line the bottom with baking parchment. Melt the butter, let it cool slightly while you chop the nuts coarse, then stir both butter and nuts into the batter. Pour into the prepared pan and bake in the 350° oven for 2 to 3 hours, or until the pudding is set. Remove from the pan while warm. The top will be a dark glossy brown and needs no embellishment other than a pretty plate or tray.
Serve warm with crème Chantilly.