During the fall, persimmons make their way onto menus across the South, boasting their bright-orange skin and umami-esque flavor characteristics. Chef Hadley Long of Nashville’s Margot Cafe & Bar makes this warm blistered persimmon and radicchio salad with Belgian endive, roasted feta, spiced walnuts, and pomegranate ginger dressing. Long recommends sourcing persimmons through local farms—you can find him perusing the Nashville Farmers Market in search of the best.
1 thinly sliced red onion
1 tablespoon minced ginger
¼ teaspoon ground coriander
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
Pinch of dried ground sumac
Salt and pepper
12 ounces Persian feta cheese
6 ounces walnut halves
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon maple syrup
1 teaspoon ras el hanout
½ teaspoon cinnamon
2 heads Belgian endive, leaves separated
1 head radicchio, sliced into thin ribbons
½ cup pomegranate seeds
Juice and zest of 1 lime
1 tablespoon pomegranate molasses
¼ cup red wine vinegar
½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Cut persimmons into 6 equal pieces each, place in a bowl, and add red onion, ginger, coriander, olive oil, and a big three-finger pinch of sumac. Season generously with salt and pepper. Cut feta cheese into 1-inch squares, and place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Pour persimmon mixture over feta and roast in oven until fragrant and slightly browned, about 25 to 30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in the same bowl, add walnuts, brown sugar, maple syrup, ras el hanout, and cinnamon. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss to coat all ingredients. Add to oven along with persimmons for final 10 minutes. Set persimmons and walnuts aside to cool.
- On a large platter, arrange endive leaves along with radicchio. In a measuring glass, add pomegranate seeds, lime juice and zest, pomegranate molasses, and vinegar. Lightly whisk to emulsify while slowly drizzling in olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle roasted persimmons and juice onto bed of radicchio and endive. With a fork, break roasted warm feta over the entirety of the salad. Garnish with spiced walnuts and drizzle with pomegranate vinaigrette.
Recipe ByChef Hadley Long of Margot Cafe & Bar in Nashville