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There are two types of commercially available persimmons. They are distinguishable by their shape.

Hachiya: This type of persimmon makes up approximately 90 percent of the available fruit. It is identifiable by its acorn like shape. This persimmon is tart until it becomes soft ripe. Hachiyas must be fully ripe to be enjoyed, which means a mushy, intense orange, jelly-like texture. The taste is compared to that of an overly sweet apricot with a smooth, slippery texture.

Fuyu: Similar in color, but resembling a squashed tomato, this variety is smaller, sweeter, and is edible while still firm.

This brightly colored, glossy orange red skinned fruit is an excellent source of vitamin A, a good source of vitamin C, and rich in fiber.

Once ripe, Hachiya persimmons don't keep well. They should be eaten right away or refrigerated for no more than a day or two.

Ripen persimmons at room temperature in a paper bag with an apple or banana. Store them in the refrigerator when ripe.

Persimmons are widely available September through December, with a peak during November.