Pears can give your dessert a little extra class

  • Monday, November 16, 2009 7:35pm
  • Life

Pears with their graceful shape and floral flavor have an elegance that few fruits can command. They have a distinctive, pleasantly grainy texture that distinguishes them from their botanical cousins, apples.

Pears and apples are often interchangeable in recipes, but using pears is a sure way to amp up the classiness factor in a dessert.

Pears are perfect with cheese; a strong blue cheese and a sweet juicy pear are a match made in heaven.

Pears, like apples, come in a multitude of sizes and types. There are two main varieties: bell-shaped European varieties and round apple-crisp Asian pears.

Pears are best in late summer and fall. Ripe pears will have a slight give at their neck and a pleasant floral aroma.

Pears ripen off the tree, which is why they can come to market rock hard. They will soften when left at room temperature, but tucking them into a sealed paper bag with a banana speeds up the process. Pears suited for eating out of hand or serving with cheese are juicy Anjou, Bartletts or Comice (think ABC).

When cooking, use the dense, tan-skinned Bosc pears. They transform into delicious tender fruit when roasted or poached.

For a great all-purpose pear, seek out the speckled pint-sized Forelle. Asian pears, which are crisp and juicy, are great sliced in salads and relishes.

Food Network Kitchens

Talk to us

More in Life

Daniella Beccaria / for The Herald

15-month-old Kantu attempts to climb a pumpkin at Stocker Farms in Snohomish on Sunday, September 20th, 2015. Stocker Farms offers a U-pick patch, farm animals and a corn maze.
Best pumpkin patch in Snohomish County

You voted, we tallied, here are the results.

Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay walks into the Prohibition Grille along Hewitt Avenue in Everett Wednesday Dec. 5, 2012 while reportedly filming an episode of Kitchen Nightmares at the Everett restaurant. (Mark Mulligan / The Herald)
Even more films and TV shows filmed in Snohomish County

Readers point out projects previously missed in this series, from reality television to low-budget indie films.

Everett comedian Taylor Clark performs stand-up in 2023 at The Triple Door in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Mike Bryk)
Comedian Taylor Clark to film first special Friday in Everett

The skateboarding funny-man will record an hour of his stand-up at the Historic Everett Theater.

Local musician Alex Johnston, whose newest album "Daylight Fooldream" pairs with short film he made with help from his partner Mikaela Henderson, sits with his morning coffee on Friday, Sept. 15, 2023, at Narrative Coffee in Everett, Washington. (Ryan Berry / The Herald)
Folktronica musician shoots 37-minute visual album on iPhone in Everett

Alex Johnston, 31, describes his music as ”if Coldplay and Bon Iver had a love child.”

Death of parent with child. Piece of paper with parents and children is torn in half.
Helping children cope with the hard realities of divorce

I’s important to set aside one’s feelings and find a way to make this challenging transition as comfortable for children as you can.

In Belgium, each type of beer has its own glass – whether wide, tall, or fluted – to show off its distinct qualities.
Rick Steves’ Europe: Bruges brews lift a weary traveler’s spirits

The Belgian city is a mecca for beer lovers from around the world.

Children’s author Barbara Herkert to lead Story Time at Edmonds Bookshop, Friday September 29th, 9:30-10:00 am!
Author to read her new kids book at Edmonds bookstore

Author Barbara Herkert will read “This Old Madrone Tree” Friday at Edmonds Bookshop.

Flowering knotweed Persicaria amplexicaulis firetail in the morning light.
Save for one infamous variety, fleece flowers are easy to fall in love with

This long-blooming, easy-to-grow perennial comes in many desirable varieties. But watch out: One is an invasive knotweed.

A view of King Street Station in Seattle, Washington from an Amtrak Cascades train to Portland, Oregon from Everett, Washington on Wednesday, May 24, 2023. (Annie Barker / The Herald)
Ride the rails on Amtrak Cascades from Everett to Portland

Make new friends and let Amtrak do the driving on this 5-hour trip past sea, city and forest.

Most Read