Although pears are available year-round, they’re most abundant in the fall and you’ll find a lot of variety right now. Common Bartletts, brown-skinned Boscs, fragrant D’Anjous and miniature Sekels are just some of what you might find in stores; generally speaking, all types of pears can be used interchangeably so use whatever is ripest at the time. That said, don’t be alarmed if the pears you find are rock-hard: unlike most fruits, pears actually ripen better off the tree so they’re commonly picked and shipped when under-ripe. This helps prevent bruising during transport as well.
When buying pears, choose those that have smooth, blemish- and bruise-free skin with a lightly sweet scent. The fruit is ripe when the blossom-end gives slightly when pressed; ripen hard pears at room temperature. Once they soften a bit, use right away or store in the fridge. The cold environment will slow ripening but won’t stop it, so be sure to use the fruit sooner rather than later. There’s nothing better than a perfectly ripe pear eaten fresh out of hand, but they’re also a terrific addition to salads, savory tarts or as a featured fruit in desserts. Add them to a cheese platter as well – they’re especially good paired with creamy blue Gorgonzola!
Bring a bit of nature to the Thanksgiving table with this elegant, quick-to-assemble arrangement featuring...
Peak-of-season pears + this collection = very good reasons to go to the store. Now.