A new spin on the classic shortcake! This coconut persimmon shortcake is stacked with ripe Fuyu persimmon, coconut whipped cream, and maple syrup.
We all know the summer staple, strawberry shortcake. How are you supposed to enjoy shortcake once strawberries and berries are no longer in season?
Experiment with other fruits!
This coconut persimmon shortcake is an autumn twist on the classic sweet treat.
The shortcake biscuit is moistened with coconut milk. Slices of ripe fuyu persimmons are tossed in maple syrup for warmth and additional sweetness. For the finishing touch, a giant dollop of coconut whipped cream ties the entire dessert together.
It’s a dessert that’s familiar enough yet also exciting and brand new!
New to persimmons? Here’s a little rundown on this popular Asian fruit.
Get to know persimmons!
Persimmons are available between September and December, usually peaking sometime in November.
There are many varieties of persimmons, but the two most common in the United States are the hachiya and fuyu.
Hachiya versus Fuyu Persimmons
Where to buy persimmons?
You’re in luck if you live in Southern California. Take a walk in the neighborhood and you’re bound to find someone growing a persimmon tree.
During the autumn and winter months, many large chain grocery stores sell Fuyu persimmons. In the Pasadena neighborhood, I have spotted persimmons at my local Ralphs and Vons. Whole Foods Market sells both the Hachiya and Fuyu variety.
International supermarkets and Asian supermarkets like Super King, H-Mart, and Seafood City will also carry persimmons.
And of course, check your local farmers market. The Pasadena Farmers Market often has various persimmon varieties during the autumn season.
How to Use Fuyu Persimmons?
Simply put, you can eat the Fuyu persimmon like an apple!
Peel the skin. Cut the fruit into quarters, wedges, or slices. Remove the seeds and enjoy immediately!
For this coconut persimmon shortcake, I thinly sliced the fruit.
In keeping with the exciting flavors. This shortcake is topped with coconut whipped cream instead of the standard whipped cream.
Dairy-Free Coconut Whipped Cream:
Coconut whipped cream is super easy to make… as long as you use the right canned coconut milk.
Use full-fat canned coconut milk or coconut cream. Make sure “coconut” is listed as the first ingredient.
I’m a fan of the brand Aroy-D. I’ve had consistent results with that particular coconut milk.
DO NOT USE canned cream of coconut. That product is sweetened and thickened with gums and stabilizers. It will be produce the same results.
Coconut whipped cream takes a little bit of preparation:
- The canned coconut milk needs to be refrigerated overnight. I suggest keeping a can in the fridge at all times in case you ever want whipped cream. Remove can from fridge without shaking or agitating it too much. As the milk chills, the coconut fats will rise to the top and slightly solidify.
- Scoop out the thickened coconut fat that has risen to the top and place in a bowl. Whip to medium peaks and season with your choice of sweetener. Keep covered and chilled until ready to use.
- Save remaining coconut milk liquids for other recipes. Use for smoothies, soups, or other desserts! Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to three days.
What is a shortcake?
As mentioned in this balsamic strawberry shortcake, there are many variations on the “shortcake” component.
Some are more like a pound cake, while others take the form of a shortbread cookie.
This coconut persimmon shortcake uses a fluffy style cream biscuit. Instead of heavy cream or milk, this biscuit uses coconut milk.
How to make shortcake biscuits:
It is important to work with cold ingredients when making biscuits. I suggest letting the flour mixture and cubed butter rest in the freezer for a few minutes before working.
- Use a pastry blender (Amazon affiliate link) or two forks to cut the butter into the dry ingredients until mixture resembles rough, coarse sand.
- Pour in well shaken coconut milk. Fold the mixture together until a “shaggy mess” dough forms.
- Dump the shaggy dough onto a lightly floured work surface. Gather and push the mixture together. Gently knead until the dough is a cohesive mass.
- Pat the dough to a rectangle about 1/2-inch thick. Use a well floured round cutter to punch out circles.
With biscuits (and other butter-cut mixtures like scones and pie dough), you want to handle the dough as little as possible.
This is to prevent the butter from melting (under the heat of your hands) and to avoid the formation of too much gluten (which can cause the biscuit to be tough and rubbery).
For this recipe, re-roll the scrap dough ONCE to end up with a total of 4 biscuit rounds.
Technique for taller biscuits:
These biscuits are leavened using a combination of baking powder and butter.
The baking powder rises the dough chemically, while the water in the butter helps to rise the dough through steaming.
For additional leavening, the raw biscuits are arranged touching each other on the baking sheet. As the biscuits cook in the oven, they push against each other to rise a little taller.
For extra sweetness and crunch, the raw biscuits are brushed with cream (regular heavy cream or coconut milk) and topped with turbinado sugar.
Assembling Coconut Persimmon Shortcakes!
Slice the shortcake biscuit in half. Add a layer of maple sweetened persimmon slices.
Add a generous dollop of coconut whipped cream.
If desired, drizzle additional sweet liquids that collect and pool in the maple persimmon mixture.
Finish with the biscuit topper!
It’s best eat the coconut persimmon shortcake immediately after assembly. This sweet treat is best enjoyed while the shortcake biscuit is still warm.
Coconut Whipped Cream
- 14.5 oz can full-fat unsweetened coconut milk
- 1/3 cup (40 g) powdered sugar*
- 3 ripe Fuyu persimmons, peeled, sliced
- 2 Tablespoons maple syrup, or more to taste
- 1 1/2 cup (200 g) all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 Tablespoon baking powder
- 2 Tablespoon (25 g) granulated sugar
- 6 Tablespoons (85 g) unsalted butter, cubed, chilled
- 2/3 cup canned full-fat unsweetened coconut milk
- turbinado sugar, to garnish top
Coconut Whipped Cream:
- Chill canned coconut milk in the fridge overnight.
- Try not to shake or agitate the can when removing from the fridge. Remove can lid. Scoop out coconut fat solids that have risen to the top of can and place in a clean bowl. Reserve remaining liquids at the bottom for other recipes.*
- Beat coconut fat solids until smooth, about 30 seconds. Add powdered sugar or desired sweetener choice. Beat until well combined, about 30-45 seconds.
- Use immediately, or keep covered and stored in the fridge until ready to use. Will keep in the fridge for up to a week.
- Peel ripe persimmons. Quarter and remove seeds. Slice into thin wedges. Toss in a bowl with maple syrup. Add more maple syrup to your liking. Cover until ready to use. Chill or keep at room temperature.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, and sugar. Toss in butter. Cover bowl and place in the freezer for 5-8 minutes until ingredients are cold.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone baking mat. Set aside.
- Using a pastry blender (or two forks) cut chilled butter into cold dry ingredients until mixture resembles crumbly, coarse sand. Pour in coconut milk. Use a sturdy spatula, fold mixture together until a "shaggy mess" dough forms.
- Dump mixture onto a lightly floured work surface. Gently knead mixture together until dough is a cohesive mass. Pat dough to a rectangle about 1/2-inch thick. Use a 3-inch biscuit cutter to punch out rounds. Alternately, use a knife to slice into squares.
- Gather scrapes and re-roll ONE time to punch out more rounds. (You should end up with a total of 4 biscuit rounds).
- Arrange biscuits on prepared baking sheet, making the biscuits touch each other. Lightly brush tops of biscuits with heavy cream, milk, or coconut milk. Sprinkle turbinado sugar on top. Bake for 20-22 minutes until biscuits have risen and are golden brown in color. Transfer to wire rack and let cool slightly.
Slice shortcake biscuit in half. Add a layer of maple sweetened persimmon slices. Add a generous dollop of coconut whipped cream on top. If desired, drizzle additional sweet liquids from persimmon mixture on top of whipped cream. Finish with biscuit top piece. Enjoy immediately.
- Adjust sweetness of coconut whipped cream to taste. Other sweeteners can be used in place of powdered sugar.
- Remaining coconut liquids from canned coconut milk can be used for smoothies, soups, or other recipes. Transfer to an airtight container and keep chilled in the fridge up up to three days.
- Coconut whipped cream will keep in the fridge for up to a week. It will harden over time. Re-whip as necessary.
- This recipe works with FUYU persimmons. Do not use HACHIYA.