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Joe Grand
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

I never had apples as a boy, that where farm grown, just pears.
We had apple at Chirstmas & for lunch in school.
The pear tree on the farm  is 75 to a 100 years old, it was old & bearing fruit when my father bought the farm over 65 years ago.
We had a fig tree,peachtree,musadine/white grape vine.
The pears are larger than a soft ball, so juciy that when you bite it you had to hold the pear like a cup so the juice would puddle in the the bite & not fall onto you shirt.
The moonglow is not as big as the pineapple pear, but It is almost as good.
I will take a pear over an apple any day, but apple are in greater demand in the retail store.
Laurie St Thomas
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

I have two pear trees growing in my backyard; I don't know what they are but they appear to be a variety of Asian pear and some type of green pear.  Does anyone know of a resource to look at bark, leaves, fruit, etc to tell what kind of pear they actually are?

Also, unrelated to types of pears, but eating them....
My daughter likes a PBP sandwich... I take a flour tortilla, butter the skillet and get it lightly toasty on one side, flip over and spread peanut butter, slices of ripe pear and sprinkle cinnamon on one section it while the other side is toasting, and then roll it up for lunch.  Delish.  It's probably easier for most people to do that out of the skillet but I worked as a chef for many years so I just do it in the skillet to warm it all up and take away the raw taste of a flour tortilla.

Warm, caramelized pears over ice cream or on pound cake is good too; so is a simple cooked pear with cinnamon, ginger and brown sugar with some whipped cream.  Cranberrries, strawberries, apples all mix well with pears in desserts.  Spices that lend a hand easily would be ginger, cinnamon, anything that goes with pumpkin; spicy sweet pears are nice with masala, cardamon, black pepper and red pepper flakes in a syrup (used to make these with peaches too, very tasty).
Walnuts and almonds.  If you mix blue cheese and very ripe pears and stuff them inside of a puff pastry or phyllo it's very yummy and even better as a dessert with a glass of port wine.

I like them in almost anything except salads.  
Inge Leonora-den Ouden
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

I love a juicy sweet pear (different varieties. but it has to be ripe). But I love cooking pears too. They are the most common in my region. I love them cooked (partly on the stove, much longer in my hay-box) in a little water with some concentrated apple-pear juice, raisins and cinnamon.
I see nobody else here mentioned cooking pears. Maybe they are not common in the USA? Here (Drenthe, eastern part of the Netherlands) they are very common, there are many (old) varieties with strange old-Dutch names.
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Joe Grand wrote:I love the pineapple pear 🍐, green or ripe. My moon glow pear 🍐 is good green &
Great ripe. I like old & wild muscadine, but the new varieties are sweeter.
Some are as high as 16% sugar, breeding of fruited plants has been happening for centuries.



I've heard of the moon glow pear, what does it taste like?

A pineapple pear sounds really good!
Joe Grand
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

I love the pineapple pear 🍐, green or ripe. My moon glow pear 🍐 is good green &
Great ripe. I like old & wild muscadine, but the new varieties are sweeter.
Some are as high as 16% sugar, breeding of fruited plants has been happening for centuries.
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Wayne Mackenzie wrote:Most European pears taste bland to me.



I've tasted under ripe pears and thought the same thing.

I haven't tasted the other varieties yet, but to me a perfectly ripe Bartlet or Bosc pear is close to perfection! The sweet, delicious flavor along with the soft, juicy flesh is mouth watering!
Wayne Mackenzie
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Most European pears taste bland to me.
I took a flyer on 4 of these trees from Oikos.
No fruit yet, but they’re growing strong.

https://oikostreecrops.com/products/organic-fruit-trees-shrubs-plants/wild-pear-trees-for-deer-humans/ecos-pear/
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Stacy Witscher wrote:Bosc is my go-to for poached pears, either for desserts (not so much anymore) or appetizers, like poached pear wrapped in prosciutto with a balsamic reduction, very nice appetizer for the holidays.



That sounds delicious! I never think about cooking with pears for some reason, but I've heard the flavor it adds is amazing!
Stacy Witscher
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Bosc is my go-to for poached pears, either for desserts (not so much anymore) or appetizers, like poached pear wrapped in prosciutto with a balsamic reduction, very nice appetizer for the holidays.
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties



I found this really cool photo of common pear varieties, most of which have been mentioned above.

From left to right they are 1) Bartlett 2) and 3) are red Bartlett varieties 4) Anjou 5) Bosc 6) Comice 7) Concorde and 8 ) Seckel

I never knew Seckel was so tiny!

I love small fruit though, it makes you feel like you can enjoy it. With huge fruit these days, I feel like I'm stuffing myself trying to finish it!
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Crt Jakhel wrote:Came here to say that the Williams pear is a classic in Europe but I've just found out that presumably this is the same cultivar that's called Bartlet in the U.S.



I love Bartlett. It's got such a good taste and texture to me, and I love how it gets really juicy when ripe!

Crt Jakhel wrote:This past season our Shinko's crop was decimated by hail and I haven't even noticed that some fruits have made it through. When I finally noticed and picked them they were glorious, the best so far in these 10 years. (On second thought this could also mean that I should thin them myself regularly.)



Sorry to hear that about the hail, but I'm glad some survived and were really good, that's awesome! We've had really bad late frosts here the last two years that claimed a lot of the fruit.

Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

I don't have any Asian pears right now. I know what I'm going to be getting when it's planting time!
Crt Jakhel
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Came here to say that the Williams pear is a classic in Europe but I've just found out that presumably this is the same cultivar that's called Bartlet in the U.S.

I'm also adding +1 vote for asian pears and the butterscotch flavor - but only when they are really ripe. Before that time many people find them juicy but bland, like a shop-bought watermelon.

This past season our Shinko's crop was decimated by hail and I haven't even noticed that some fruits have made it through. When I finally noticed and picked them they were glorious, the best so far in these 10 years. (On second thought this could also mean that I should thin them myself regularly.)




Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

I've heard Anjou and Cornice are really good varieties.

Has anyone tasted, or is anyone growing these?
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Kim Goodwin wrote:I second Seckel.  They are exquisite, like juicy little honey balls.

Asian pears, we grew two varieties, they are also delicious.  Though most people only try them fresh, they are actually quite good dried in slices like apples, or in pear sauce (skin on works if you have a powerful blender).

If you can find a true winter pear - that's a pear that has to be harvested in late fall before a major freeze, then kept and ripened indoors for several weeks - these can be fantastic, some akin to a seckel, some to a really delicious comice or bartlett.  When you harvest a winter pear, it will be rock hard and inedible, yet the size of the fruit will be fully developed.  They can be huge types bigger than a large apple, or tiny pears like a Secklel, russet or clear skin.  They are quite unique.

Most of the winter pears I've had were in my parent's orchard, where they have two seed-grown trees, likely offspring from the bartlett orchard that still partially stands.  These winter pears would stretch our pear season into late Dec/early Jan.  Delectable.



I might have to look into getting a Seckel soon!

Very cool!

Mmm, pear sauce sounds good!
Kim Goodwin
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

I second Seckel.  They are exquisite, like juicy little honey balls.

Asian pears, we grew two varieties, they are also delicious.  Though most people only try them fresh, they are actually quite good dried in slices like apples, or in pear sauce (skin on works if you have a powerful blender).

If you can find a true winter pear - that's a pear that has to be harvested in late fall before a major freeze, then kept and ripened indoors for several weeks - these can be fantastic, some akin to a seckel, some to a really delicious comice or bartlett.  When you harvest a winter pear, it will be rock hard and inedible, yet the size of the fruit will be fully developed.  They can be huge types bigger than a large apple, or tiny pears like a Secklel, russet or clear skin.  They are quite unique.

Most of the winter pears I've had were in my parent's orchard, where they have two seed-grown trees, likely offspring from the bartlett orchard that still partially stands.  These winter pears would stretch our pear season into late Dec/early Jan.  Delectable.
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Chris Holcombe wrote:I planted Korean giant, chojuro and seuri. I tasted hosui at the home orchard society this fall and that’s another really good asian pear.  Same complex sweet crisp butterscotch flavor. My daughter had a meltdown over not being able to eat the rest haha. They’re that good! My trees are going into their 3rd season so they’re young still. I got 2 small chojuros this past fall and they were quite good. I have high hopes the others are just as good. I might graft a hosui just for the heck of it onto my bartlett tree.



That's so cool, I'll have to check those varieties out!

That's a good sign a food is good when kids get upset about not being able to eat something.

Congrats on your first harvest, I love tasting a fruit the first time from a tree I've grown, it's so satisfying!

Chris Holcombe
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

I planted Korean giant, chojuro and seuri. I tasted hosui at the home orchard society this fall and that’s another really good asian pear.  Same complex sweet crisp butterscotch flavor. My daughter had a meltdown over not being able to eat the rest haha. They’re that good! My trees are going into their 3rd season so they’re young still. I got 2 small chojuros this past fall and they were quite good. I have high hopes the others are just as good. I might graft a hosui just for the heck of it onto my bartlett tree.
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Stacy Witscher wrote:I concur on asian pears, they are delicious. They are very crisp, I would say even crisper than apples. But given that a lot of their appeal is that crisp texture, they are best for fresh eating, not preserving, although I have found a pickled asian pear recipe that I want to try.



I didn't know they were that crisp, and I love a crisp apple, sounds good!
Stacy Witscher
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

I concur on asian pears, they are delicious. They are very crisp, I would say even crisper than apples. But given that a lot of their appeal is that crisp texture, they are best for fresh eating, not preserving, although I have found a pickled asian pear recipe that I want to try.

Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Chris Holcombe wrote:Yeah you have to try the russet asian pears! They’re crisp, juicy and have a sweet butterscotch flavor in the skin. They’re amazing!



Mmm, sounds good!
Chris Holcombe
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Yeah you have to try the russet asian pears! They’re crisp, juicy and have a sweet butterscotch flavor in the skin. They’re amazing!
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Wayne Mackenzie wrote:^^^ I tasted my first Asian Pear a few years ago and I was hooked for life.
They are awesome IMO.



They have more of an apple texture, right?
Wayne Mackenzie
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

^^^ I tasted my first Asian Pear a few years ago and I was hooked for life.
They are awesome IMO.
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Bryant RedHawk wrote:We grow Bartlett, Asian apple and Bosc pears. We can most of them but we also eat some fresh.

We can store fresh picked in the "cold" root cellar for around two to three months. (we have two root cellars, one gets colder than it should and that's were we store apples and pears, separated and each with its own vent pipe).



I want to try an Asian pear soon, I've never tried one!

Sounds like neat root cellars that you have, I'd like to try making one of those soon!
Bryant RedHawk
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

We grow Bartlett, Asian apple and Bosc pears. We can most of them but we also eat some fresh.

Like Alder says, pick as soon as the stem swells, pears that ripen on the tree usually rot immediately (for us anyway).
Our pears will stay rock hard for around a month after picking unless we put them in a paper bag with a slice of apple to force ripen.

We can store fresh picked in the "cold" root cellar for around two to three months. (we have two root cellars, one gets colder than it should and that's were we store apples and pears, separated and each with its own vent pipe).
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Alder Burns wrote:Many people find that pears from backyard trees are disappointing compared to commercial fruit.  In large part this is due to harvest timing and aftercare.  Ideally most pears should be picked when still somewhat hard....the key is to look along the small stem of the fruit itself and there will be a swollen spot right where the stem will break.  When this is swollen and the pear will snap off cleanly at that point when gently lifted, the fruit is good to harvest.  This may be a month or more before they turn color and start to drop on their own.  After picking, refrigerate them for a while...at least a couple of weeks.  Many varieties can keep in cold storage for months at this stage.  To ripen them up, pull some out and let sit at room temperature for a few days and they will soften up nicely.  Many old trees that produce "sandy" or "gritty" pears that are basically useless off the tree will ripen up smooth and creamy given this treatment!



Good tip Alder!

I've done this for my Bartlett, and they taste amazing!

I let the Keiffers sit even longer hoping they would improve in storage, but no amount of time made them appealing for fresh eating!
Alder Burns
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Many people find that pears from backyard trees are disappointing compared to commercial fruit.  In large part this is due to harvest timing and aftercare.  Ideally most pears should be picked when still somewhat hard....the key is to look along the small stem of the fruit itself and there will be a swollen spot right where the stem will break.  When this is swollen and the pear will snap off cleanly at that point when gently lifted, the fruit is good to harvest.  This may be a month or more before they turn color and start to drop on their own.  After picking, refrigerate them for a while...at least a couple of weeks.  Many varieties can keep in cold storage for months at this stage.  To ripen them up, pull some out and let sit at room temperature for a few days and they will soften up nicely.  Many old trees that produce "sandy" or "gritty" pears that are basically useless off the tree will ripen up smooth and creamy given this treatment!
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Ken W Wilson wrote:Seckel is my favorite.



Do you grow it yourself or get it from somewhere else?
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Tj Jefferson wrote:This is NOT my product, it is from Living Energy Farms. I haven't even been there, but this is the best most concise document for what will thrive in the Atlantic coast.

Anyhow, itwas on thier website, now on here.



Yeah, I found that diagram on page 3 to be pretty accurate for me, based on what I've grown in my area. It was interesting too how it pointed out that the spectrum was reversed for cooler, dryer climates.

I thought it was funny how it called the Keiffer pear tasteless, I'm glad it wasn't just me!

After some researching, it looks like they are usually made into preserves, so at least they are good for something I guess!
Ken W Wilson
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

Seckel is my favorite.
Tj Jefferson
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

This is NOT my product, it is from Living Energy Farms. I haven't even been there, but this is the best most concise document for what will thrive in the Atlantic coast.

Anyhow, itwas on thier website, now on here.
Steve Thorn
Post     Subject: Good Tasting Pear Varieties

I'm currently growing Bartlett and Bosc pear varieties.

I was growing a Keiffer pear, but didn't really care for eating it fresh, so I cut it down.

Pears are ok to me, but not really one of my favorite fruits. However a perfectly ripe and juicy Bartlett or Bosc pear can be amazing!

Are you growing or have tasted any varieties that you really love?!