Pears have been around for thousands of years, as noted by references to the sweet fruit by the ancient Greek poet Homer. Sweet, juicy, and slightly tangy,
pears provide a good amount of fiber and vitamin C, all for about 100 calories per pear. There are many varieties of pears, so finding one that you like is easy!
The most common pear types sold in the United States include Bosc, Bartlett, and D’Anjou. Varying in color (green, red, bronze), each type of pear also varies in sweetness and texture. Bosc pears are often used in recipes since they hold up to the heat in cooking. If you wish to can pears, consider Bartlett pears. All pears make a great fresh snack! Choose pears that are smooth-skinned with little to no blemishes. The softer the fruit, the riper it is, so consider when you wish to eat the pears when buying. Pears will continue to ripen, especially at room temperature. So, if you wish to eat a pear later in the week, consider buying a harder pear and letting it ripen on the counter for a day or two. When ready to use, wash the skin gently and enjoy!
Sliced pears can be added to any salad but go especially well with walnuts. For a sweet treat, try poaching pears! Peel and slice your pears. Prepare your poaching liquid, using water, juice, cider vinegar, or wine — whatever flavor works best for you! Add flavors to your poaching liquid, such as lemon zest, sugar, ginger, honey, vanilla bean, or cinnamon. Some common combinations are red wine and cinnamon; water, sugar, lemon juice, and vanilla bean; and apple cider, balsamic vinegar, honey, and brown sugar. Bring your poaching liquid to boil, and gently place pears in the liquid and reduce to a simmer. Cook until the pears are soft enough to pierce with a fork but not
falling apart. Remove from the liquid. You may then cook down the liquid to thicken and use it as a sauce. Serve alone or with ice cream or frozen yogurt.
One whole pear is about 100 calories and is an excellent source of fiber and vitamin C.