Also Known as Chinese Pear
The Asian Pear belongs to the species, Pyrus pyrifolia, of the Rose family: Rosaceae
The term asian pear refers to any of firm apple-shaped pears of Japanese and Chinese origin that have crisp juicy flesh, a mild flavour and a fruity aroma. The skin colour varies from pale yellowish to yellow green to tan with brown russet overtone.
The edible fruit is known by many names, including: Nashi Pear, Apple Pear, Japanese Pear, Japanese Apple Pear, Korean Pear, Taiwan Pear or Sand Pear
The asian pear is grown mainly in Eastern Asia and also in Australia, New Zealand, California. It’s a native to China, Taiwan, Japan, and Korea. They are limited in the North American market and are usually expensive compared to other pears.
They look very much like a cross between an apple and a pear but they are true pears. The colour of the skin is yellow-green or russet.They have the round shape of an apple and the texture and flavour is crisp, firm, juicy and sweet like that of an apple.
How do I know the Asian Pear is Ripe?
Unlike the commercially grown, European pears cultivars (Pyrus communis), ripe Asian pears do not yield to pressure. The best indicator of ripeness is the fruity aroma.
Most Asian pears are sold ready to eat and store very well when ripe, keeping one week at room temperature and up to 3 months when refrigerated.
How to Serve Asian Pear
They are commonly peeled and served raw. The fruit tends to be quite large and fragrant, and when carefully wrapped (it has a tendency to bruise because of its juiciness), it can last for several weeks or more in a cold, dry place.
Availability: August to October; imported ones available all year round.
Varieties of Asian Pears
Hosui: Large, yellowish-brown, russet fruit with prominent lenticels and excellent quality. Many prefer the taste of this variety. Fruit matures mid- to late August.
Kosui: Apple-shaped, small- to medium-sized fruit. Skin is brown and fruit mature in mid- to late August.
Olympic: Variously known as A-Ri-Rang, Korean Giant, or Olympic Giant and is a new variety developed in Korea. Fruits are large, late, round, and have an attractive golden russetted skin. Olympic has the longest storage life of the Asian pears
Shinseiki (New Century): Yellow-green to yellow skinned type, medium-sized, good- to excellent-flavoured fruit that ripens early. Flesh is creamy white with a very sweet taste. Fruit is round to oblong. Fruit matures in early to mid-August.
Twentieth Century (Nijisseiki): Yellow-skinned type that is the most popular variety worldwide. It has very good medium to large fruit.