When ripe, a pear tastes incredible, but when it’s not, it tastes like a tannic, sad apple. In the United States, 80 percent of pear trees are planted in the Pacific Northwest, where damp volcanic soil and mild summers give optimal growing conditions. Many of the most popular pear cultivars are also produced in Asia and Europe.
Pears can be classified into two main groups: Asian and European. Asian pears have a consistent hue (yellowish-tan) and a shape similar to apples, but they have an entirely different flavor and texture. After being picked, Asian pears do not change color, although certain European pears do. European pears are what most of us envision: a smooth-skinned fruit with mild ridges and curves on the base.
Pears are a great fruit, but if you have never tried them before, you could be surprised by the variety. In this guide, we will overlook numerous types of pears, and explain how to eat them, when to eat them, and why they’re so tasty.
What Type of Fruit Is a Pear?
A pear is a tropical fruit that grows on the same-named tree in the rose flower family. It’s noted for its bell form, which is wide at the bottom and curved at the top, as well as its thin surface skin and delicious meat on the inside. Pears are mainly composed of water, so dietary fiber content is the most important nutrient they provide.
Pears are a type of fruit that grows on trees and is collected in the Northern Hemisphere from midsummer to early October. The pear shrub and tree belong to the genus Pyrus, which belongs to the Rosaceae family and bears the same-named pomaceous fruit.
How Many Different Types of Pears Are There?
There are about 5,000 pear types growing around the globe, with American, European, and Asian cultivars typically distinguished. Asian pears are a spherical, crisp, and sweet fruit that is significantly different from what most people think of when they hear the name “pears.” They are, nevertheless, rising in popularity, despite their short season.
The beauty of pears is that they come in a variety of flavors to suit any palate. Some are sweet, while others are sour. Some are harder, while others are suppler. There is a range of pears that will match your needs, whether you want to create a delicious dessert or have a pleasant snack to sink your teeth into.
Green Anjou (pronounced ON-ju) pears have an egg-shaped structure with a bigger circular lower half that gradually tapers above the middle to a thinner curved top. Their skin is a beautiful green tone with a gentle crimson tint on occasion. The color of the skin changes only slightly as it ripens.
Green Anjou pears are harvested in the fall and arrive in the supermarket in late September or early October. Throughout the summer, they are the most commonly accessible type. Because of its practically year-round accessibility and variety in cooking applications, many professional chefs pick the Anjou pear for their dishes.
The Anjou is a pear that can be used for a variety of purposes. When ripe, they’re juicy, with a mild sweetness that hints at a pleasant lemon-lime flavor. Their thick interior keeps up well in hot applications such as grilling, roasting, poaching, or baking, and they’re wonderful cut freshly in salads or as an on-the-go snack.
Red Anjous have a similar pattern to Green Anjous and are just as convenient to spot by their form. Red Anjous are distinguished by their egg-shaped look, with a huge round bottom portion that begins a steady and even taper above the mid-point to a smaller, rounded top. Red Anjous vary in color from pear to pear, but they are often dark red in color, with light longitudinal streaks of color formed by the sun when the pear was still on the branch. Red Anjou pears, like Starkrimson and Red Bartlett, are frequently labeled as Red Pears in supermarkets.
The prominence of Red Anjous has brought this type a lot of attention. Red Anjou pear tree planting has increased in the Pacific Northwest, and they are now available commercially from mid-September or mid-October through the summer season.
The Bartlett has a proper “pear form,” with a spherical bell on the lower half and a distinct hump with a shorter stem. Bartlett pears are highly fragrant and have a distinct “pear flavor.” Green Bartletts are commonly seen in large supermarkets, and they turn yellow as they mature at home when kept at ambient temperature. Red Bartletts are another option, and they’re frequently found directly next to Yellow Bartletts in vegetable sections. There are only a few distinctions in flavor between both Bartlett pears. Try using Red Bartletts in gift baskets and platters as an additional color option. Red and Green Bartletts make a spectacular table-top centerpiece when combined in a lovely fruit bowl.
Bartletts are much more than a canned pear, and you can savor their delicious flavor and silky texture in a variety of cuisines in addition to eating them fresh. Serve sliced Bartletts with your favorite Caesar dressing on top of a beautiful green salad. Alternatively, for a tasty snack, offer freshly made Bartlett slices with parmesan.
Seckels (pronounced SEK-el) are tiny pears with a spherical, fat body, a thin stem, and a narrow neck. Their skin is normally emerald green, but they often have a dark crimson flush that encompasses the entire pear’s exterior.
The classic munching pear is the Seckel pear. They’re little and can be consumed in a single bite. These pears, considering their age, are quite adaptable. They can be tinned, cooked in various dishes, or consumed raw. Even though they are frequently consumed as snacks, be aware of their occasional bitter flavor, which can take some time to adjust to. Sweet Seckel pears are in season from September to February, with production beginning in the fall.
Seckels are easily overlooked by bigger types because of their little stature. Nevertheless, it is their shape that makes them ideal for particular applications, such as salad or dessert.
For a myriad of purposes, Bosc pears distinguish themselves in a bunch. Their slender, curving stem and exquisite lengthened neck, which eventually expands to a full rounded base, give them a distinct appearance among pears. Bosc are also distinguished by their hue, which is a deep caramel chestnut with russeting on the top layer of the skin.
For Bosc, rusting is a natural aspect. The russeting may cover the full pear’s surface or only a tiny area of the shell. The taste of the fruit is unaltered in either scenario. Bosc pears are a crisp, delicious delight. Whey can be consumed directly, but it’s more commonly used in preparation due to its ability to maintain its structure when exposed to heat.
Bosc pears are accessible from April to September, with some varieties accessible as early as March and April. Early in the ripening phase, Bosc pears are richer and more delicious than other pear kinds. As a consequence, you can appreciate the nuanced flavor, honey richness, and juiciness of Bosc before the meat has entirely disintegrated.
Bosc pears can be used in a variety of cuisines, including the famous pear Tarte. Bosc pears should have a russet brown tint exterior. Even when mature, they will be pretty decent, yielding very little when carefully pressed.
Comice comes in a variety of forms, but their structure is distinctive amid them, with a plump body and a small, well-defined neck. They’re usually bright green, with a crimson flush that covers tiny to big parts of the top layer of the skin. Some younger varieties, on the other hand, are practically totally crimson. Comice is a succulent that can develop to be quite enormous, and the super-sized wonders are frequently found in custom packaging.
Comice pears make a great lunchtime treat. Because of their fruity flavor, they are wonderful when eaten fresh. While some pears have a gritty feel, Comice pears do not, hence eating them raw is so enjoyable. The skin of these pears is bright orange in hue, with a red pattern across one side. When the sun reaches that specific spot, it changes color.
Despite the fact that pears of all kinds are associated with the holiday season, Comice have become known as the “Holiday Pear.” They’re frequently featured in local supermarket vegetable sections’ Christmas present hampers and baskets. Many retailers carry Comice throughout the winter holidays, but don’t restrict yourself to just the festivities to enjoy this unique variation! From September to February, comics are available to buy. Northwest Comice pears can be found in the mixed fruit area of your local supermarket.
The gracefully formed Concorde is renowned for its extraordinarily elongated neck, which curves to an almost pointy top, and a lengthy, typically curled stem. It has a spherical base and yellow-green skin with a reddish-brown on some or all of the pear’s surface. The Concorde pear has a rich interior that is fresh and delicious even when it is still hard, similar to the more widespread Bosc pear. It doesn’t have to be mellow in order to be delicious! These pears are delicious, both fresh and cooked. When cut, their meat maintains its color and does not fade considerably. Concorde pears can also be cooked and will hold their shape because of their solid density.
Because of its expanding popularity, the size of the Pacific Northwest Concorde pear production grows year after year. Concorde pear production commences in the fall and lasts till the type is bought completely, which usually happens in December.
Forelles are a small variety of pear that is somewhat bigger than Seckel pears. Their bell-shaped uniform shape begins with a simple spherical bottom and curves smoothly to a narrow stem. The bottom of the plant is typically lengthy, upright, and slender. The red lenticels or blemishes that distinguish this type are unique characteristics. They have juicy and crispy meat.
Forelles are one of the greatest mysteries among pear connoisseurs. The overall agricultural size of all professionally farmed pears in the Northwest is one of the smallest. That does not, however, negate the need for Forelles among consumers who are acquainted with the type. They’re accessible from September to January, so take advantage of them when you see them on exhibit at the shops where you buy them. Because Forelles pears are tiny and elliptical in form, they are easily identified. Their skin contains spots and freckles with yellow and green specks and is soft.
Starkrimson pears have a broad, stout stem and are known for their vivid red crimson color. The Starkrimson is a mellow, delicate pear with a flowery undertone. When fully mature, it is quite delicious and has a delightful, silky finish, making it ideal for munching, salads, or any other natural application that highlights the brightness of its exterior. Starkrimson pears, like Red Anjou and Red Bartlett pears, are frequently labeled as Red Pears in supermarkets.
The Starkrimson is a midsummer pear, which means it is harvested in September and is one of the earliest types to appear in stores when pear season starts. From August until November, it is in season.
Pear enthusiasts choose the Starkrimson for any refreshing use that highlights its body’s vibrant hue. For an indescribably beautiful flash of color, slice them fresh into salads, cereal bowls, or to complement charcuterie.
Pear is the kind of fruit that’s wonderful when mature and like a sad, tannic apple when not. Many major pear varieties are also grown in European countries and parts of Asia. There are numerous varieties of pears available, and we have listed some of the most popular and demanded ones in this article.