A Simple, Bright Persimmon Salad

November 20, 2013

When she has the kitchen all to herself, Phyllis Grant of Dash and Bella cooks beautiful iterations of what solo meals were always meant to be: exactly what you want, when and where you want them.

Today: When it all gets to be too much, sit down, pour some wine, and indulge in this bright, sweet salad.

Persimmon Salad on Food52

Shop the Story

There may be Halloween candy left in the cupboard, but the small creatures in my house have skipped Thanksgivukkah altogether and crash-landed straight into Christmas in the form of Kelly Clarkson’s holiday album, candy cane everything (hand soap, Oreos, tea), and “Santa Paws” one through three.

But I have some armor. A buffer. A transition. A pause.

My persimmon salad.

Here’s all you need to do for some salvation from all things holiday.

More: Curious about persimmons? Read up here.

Persimmon Salad on Food52

Thinly slice a firm fuyu persimmon (I use a mandoline but a serrated knife works quite well). Layer the slices on your favorite plate. Splash with lemon juice and olive oil. Add crunchy salt. With a paring knife or peeler, float down paper-thin whisps of firm and salty cheese (Parmesan, Piave, Bianco Sardo, Manchego, or Asiago). Halve a pomegranate. With the cut-side of one half facing the salad, smack a wooden spoon on the exterior, raining down the arils and some juice. (Or do this.) Remove any errant pieces of white membrane. Sprinkle with crushed Marcona almonds and parsley leaves.

Grill some bread. Pour yourself a glass of white wine. Sit down with your salad.

Take a deep breath. Think about one thing you can let go of during this crazy-ass holiday season. Pick up a piece of bread. Scoop up some salad. Eat. Sip your wine. Repeat.

More: Need even more of a break? This persimmon treat is calling your name.

Photos by Phyllis Grant 

See what other Food52 readers are saying.

  • Alison Jones-Pomatto
    Alison Jones-Pomatto
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  • Phyllis Grant
    Phyllis Grant
  • Greenstuff
  • petitbleu
Phyllis Grant is an IACP finalist for Personal Essays/Memoir Writing and a three-time Saveur Food Blog Awards finalist for her blog, Dash and Bella. Her essays and recipes have been published in a dozen anthologies and cookbooks including Best Food Writing 2015 and 2016. Her work has been featured both in print and online for various outlets, including Oprah, The New York Times, Food52, Saveur, The Huffington Post, Time Magazine, The San Francisco Chronicle, Tasting Table and Salon. Her memoir with recipes, Everything Is Out of Control, is coming out April 2020 from Farrar Straus & Giroux. She lives in Berkeley, California with her husband and two children.


Alison J. October 26, 2022
Everything about this makes me happy especially the instructions!
Brandi November 26, 2014
I bought persimmons just for this recipe. That was 2 weeks ago. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, my baby was up from midnight until 3a last night, I haven't showered in 5 days, and I'm 3 weeks behind on my work deadlines. I was asking a lot from this salad. I didn't have a pomegranate, so I used Trader Joe's pomegranate vinegar instead of lemon juice and just regular slivered almonds and some torn lettuce leaves. This salad is like having lunch with a pretty friend. It made me feel pretty. It made me feel friendly. It made me smile. Everything is going to be okay. I know cookbook writing must be so stressful for you, but lady, I can't wait to have that book in my life. I'm going to make this salad again tonight. Thank you!
Phyllis G. November 29, 2014
i read your comment 2 days ago. i cried. i smiled. i sent it to my best friends. i read it out loud to my husband. here's what i said: this is the reason i'm doing all of this. the reason i'm telling these stories. the reason i'm sharing. the reason i'm not curling up in bed and giving up. this. you. this comment. feeling the universal. eating the salad. my salad, your salad. whatever salad you can make after no sleep or no husband or no ingredients. this. this is it. the universal. the brightness. the lift. the shift. the finding of beauty in a pomegranate salad. thank you so much for writing. xoxo phyllis
Phyllis G. November 20, 2013
my mother-in-law just emailed me to ask if i would make this for thanksgiving. cool.
Kenzi W. November 21, 2013
Greenstuff November 20, 2013
We've been eating salads with persimmon and pomegranate all week! The last one included little gems lettuce and a spanish blue cheese. The one before had frisee and almonds. All great.
Phyllis G. November 20, 2013
yes to the blue cheese and little gems.
petitbleu November 20, 2013
This looks awesome! I love the contrast in colors and textures in this salad.