We're all about breaking out our cast-iron pans as often as possible, which is just one of the reasons we're obsessed with this recipe from Zeb Stevenson, chef of Watershed in Atlanta. He purées ripe persimmons with honey to serve over melty broiled cheese for this stellar dip that demands plenty of toasted ciabatta for scooping.
As with so many of our favorite crowd-pleasers, this recipe really couldn't be any easier, and everyone will think it took a lot more effort than it did. You'll probably have some leftover persimmon purée, but it's so versatile, you're going to use it on everything. Try spooning it over waffles for breakfast, using it as a marinade for chicken or even just serving it in a small bowl on your next cheese board. You can't go wrong.
To learn more, read “'Simmon Says.”
Broiled Cheese Dip with Persimmons
Recipe adapted from Zeb Stevenson, Watershed, Atlanta, GA
Yield: 4 to 6 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
4 medium (1 pound) ripe Fuyu persimmons, stemmed and quartered
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Pinch kosher salt
Eight ¾-inch slices ciabatta bread
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 pound mozzarella, cut into 8 slices
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
¼ cup mixed herbs (such as dill, tarragon, chives, basil and parsley)
1. In a blender, purée the persimmons, honey, lemon juice and salt until smooth.
2. Preheat the broiler. Lay the ciabatta slices on a sheet pan and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the oil. Broil, flipping once, until golden and crisp, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Set aside.
3. Layer the mozzarella in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet or oval cast-iron baking dish. Broil until golden and bubbling, 5 to 6 minutes.
4. Carefully remove the skillet from the oven and place on a trivet. Spoon the persimmon purée around the cheese, then drizzle the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil and the vinegar over the cheese. Top with fresh herbs, then serve with the toasted ciabatta.