Los Angeles

Hoshi Gaki Classes at Angeli Caffe

What do you do with Hachiya persimmons? Discover the fine art of persimmon massage! A Hoshi Gaki class will be held at Angeli Caffe, followed by a communal dinner.

Hoshi gaki means dried persimmon in Japanese. Treasured as a symbol of long life, prosperity, and fertility, hoshi gaki have been produced in Japanese villages every fall for centuries. Hachiya persimmons are peeled and dried whole over a period of several weeks through a combination of hanging and gentle hand-massaging, until the sugars contained in the fruit form a delicate “bloom,” a surface dusting that looks like frost, and the fruit becomes sweet as candy. Think of them as Kobe persimmons. They are a delicious tradition that deserves to be better known outside the Japanese community. Slow Food has placed hoshi gaki on its prestigious Ark of Taste.

When: Two dates available: Saturday, October 28, 2006 from 1:30pm to 4:30pm
or Sunday, October 29, 2006 from 1:30pm to 4:30pm
Where: Angeli Caffe, 7274 Melrose Avenue, Los Angeles
Cost: Class fee is $50 per person; dinner additional (see below)

To sign up, please email jhrieger@sbcglobal.net or call: 916.769.5462. Attendance is limited to 35 per class, reservations accepted on a first-come basis. Everyone is encouraged to stay for dinner at Angeli Caffe after class. To make dinner reservations, please call the restaurant directly at 323.936.9086.

We will learn the art of Hoshi Gaki under the skillful guidance of Jeff Rieger, Placer County farmer and Slow Food member, who restored an old orchard planted in rare persimmons and Asian pears. Each participant will receive a flat of persimmons, string, and a bamboo pole from which to hang the drying fruit. We will sample hoshigaki, and go home with fruit that is ready to hang and dry, and detailed written instructions on how to complete the process.

This is a hands-on class, so wear comfortable clothes and bring an apron and a good paring knife. A short sturdy blade works better than a long thin one. You must be 12 years old or older to attend this class.