The pear: varieties, properties and culinary tips
The pear, originally from western Asia, is now intensively cultivated in many countries, from China to Spain, from Spain to Germany, without forgetting of course Italy.
Pears of Italian production are available on the market practically all year round. In fact, there are numerous types of pears depending on the season, with summer, autumn and winter varieties, all very popular. Fruit of the balance par excellence, the pear refreshes and purifies and she is the guest of honor on our tables. Fragile and tasty, it is a delicate princess for our menus. It melts in your mouth and lends itself to many combinations, even the most creative ...
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Williams: variety of English origin selected at the end of the 18th century, William is certainly the best known and most widespread variety in our markets and supermarket fruit counters, from August to February. It has a "flask" shape and a light yellowish green skin. , depending on the state of ripeness (more or less advanced). In the parts most exposed to the sun, the skin is pinkish-red. The pulp is white, tender, sweet and juicy, which is why everyone likes it, young and old!
Very versatile variety, it is used to make jams and fruit juices, and is also ideal for fruit salads, smoothies and cocktails. Soft and sugary, especially if well ripe, it is also excellent eaten alone, as a snack or snack. But beware: it tends to bruise easily!
The red William has also existed for some years: very similar to its yellow cousin, it is unmistakable thanks to its red skin. The ivory-colored pulp is juicy and very fragrant, with a fine consistency. It is very good to eat fresh, in any time of day!
Santa Maria: is a summer variety obtained from the crossing of Williams and Coscia. It is harvested at the end of July and consumed until October. The Santa Maria has a rounded shape and a yellow skin with small dark green spots. The pulp is pulp. white, fine, compact, juicy, with a fresh and not excessively sweet flavor.
La Coscia: is a summer pear, grown mainly in the central-southern regions. Small in size, it has a yellow and red skin (in the parts most exposed to the sun). The pulp is juicy, sugary and grainy, with an intense flavor. It is excellent eaten fresh, combined with semi-mature and spicy cheeses, or cooked.
The Guyot: Guyot, a medium-sized pear with a yellow skin, is also called early Williams due to a certain similarity between the two fruits and the fact that this variety is harvested shortly before William, therefore already in July. The Guyot has a slightly lighter pulp than the William and a little grainier but good, but always very juicy and sugary. And like the William it is perfect for fruit salads, smoothies, juices and smoothies.
The Conference: among the best known and most appreciated varieties is the Conference. Originally, like William, from England, where it was selected at the end of the 19th century, the Conference has the typical "pear" shape, therefore round and elongated. It is harvested at the end of August and can be found on the fruit stands until the end of May. The peel is bronze-green in color and thick, which makes it resistant to handling. The ivory-colored pulp is melting, juicy, sweet, aromatic and slightly acidulous. For this reason it is perfect to be eaten cooked or in the preparation of particularly sugary desserts, but also of savory dishes.
The Kaiser: is a variety from regular shape and completely brown and rusty skin, which makes it easily recognizable. It is harvested in late August / early September and can be kept until the end of April. The pulp is whitish, juicy, sweet-sour and crunchy. Being very firm, it is one of the best types of pears in the kitchen, because, while remaining soft, it flakes less during cooking. It is excellent baked in the oven, with a little sugar and is perfect in cakes. Delicious and aromatic, it is also very good eaten fresh.
L "Abbot: this variety owes its name to the Abbot Fetel, who selected it in the mid-1800s. Today the Abbot is the most loved pear by the Italians and Italy is the main producer. The Abbot has an elongated and elegant shape and its skin is light green-yellow, slightly rusty. It is harvested in September and is available until the end of May. The pulp is white, a little coarse, fragrant, very juicy and melting. It is eaten fresh and is also excellent for the preparation of cakes, desserts and savory dishes, such as risotto.
The Decana: also called Comizio or Decana del Comizio, this variety was selected in France at the beginning of the nineteenth century. The Decana is large, with a rounded shape and a yellow-green skin. The pulp is juicy, fragrant, sweet-sour and compact, which melts in the mouth when the fruit is fully ripe. Available from November until April, the Decana is excellent for the preparation of jams and fruit juices.
La Rosada: it is easily recognizable by its rounded shape and yellow-pink-reddish skin. The pulp is firm, juicy, sweet-sour and crunchy. Crunchy in the mouth, it is excellent eaten fresh or used to make cakes and pies. It keeps perfectly and can be consumed until mid-March.
The Crassana Pass: winter variety, the Passa Crassana is harvested in October and can be kept until March. It has a rounded shape with a thick, yellowish green, partially rusty skin. The pulp is grainy, melting, acidulous, aromatic. It is good eaten fresh but is especially appreciated when cooked in the oven.
The nutritional properties
- With an energy content of 50 kcal / 100 g and 87% water, pear is an excellent, refreshing and purifying snack, even for those on a diet.
- The pear contains 12% of carbohydrates: especially fructose, which is slowly assimilated in the body. Fructose is the natural sugar with the highest sweetening power, which gives energy and sates. This is why it is suitable for those who practice sports (especially before training), but also for weaning children.
- Being rich in potassium (125 mg / 100 g), the pear has excellent diuretic properties and therefore helps to constipation and water retention.
- It also contains a lot of calcium, magnesium (7 mg / 100g), iron (0.2 mg / 100g) and copper: all essential elements for the proper functioning of cells.
- The pear also contains vitamins C (5 mg / 100 g), B and E (powerful antioxidants that protect cells from aging).
- Without forgetting the high content of folic acid, which guarantees correct neuromuscular functioning: eating two pears a day will be enough to cover 10% of our daily folic acid requirement.
- Thanks to the high fiber content, the pear helps regulate intestinal transit.
- Being a very digestive fruit (especially if well ripe), the pear can also be eaten by those suffering from stomach acid.
In short, the pear is a real panacea for health, to be consumed without moderation!