5 Uses for Bartlett Pears
Pear season is almost here, and one of the first varieties in line are our bountiful Bartletts!
One of the world’s most popular pear varieties, Bartlett Pears are large with the classic pear-shape: rounded bottom half tapering to a small, curved neck. When Bartletts are mature but not yet fully ripe, they are green-skinned with a tart-tasting, crunchy flesh; when fully ripe their skins turn golden, and the flesh becomes sweet and juicy with a buttery texture. While Bartletts are available year-round, fall through winter is their peak season time.
Bartlett Pear Facts
The Bartlett pear is named Enoch Bartlett, who owned the Massachusetts estate on which the European variety was originally introduced. In Europe, the fruit is known as the Williams pear, after a nurseryman who introduced the variety to England where it was first discovered in 1765.
Favored for their unique shape, bright color, smooth texture and sweet flavor, Bartlett pears are popular in a wide variety of culinary applications including savory dishes, desserts, and cocktails. Here are just five of the many ways in which Bartlett pears can be enjoyed:
Crisp or soft, Bartlett pears are a delicious, nutritious snack when eaten fresh out of hand. And because Bartlett pears contain vitamin C, potassium, fiber, and some iron, they’re a very healthy snack, too (particularly when eaten with the peel). Pears are thought to fight inflammation, promote heart and gut health, protect against certain diseases, and even aid in weight loss and maintenance.
Eating Fresh with Other Foods.
Fresh, raw pears complement many foods, such as cheese, nuts, seeds, garlic and even onions. Include slices of pear along with apples and crackers on a cheeseboard when entertaining, or try adding slices of pear to a grilled cheese sandwich. Chopped pears even making a wonderful topping for pizza! And of course, a fruit salad including pears makes a wonderful snack, salad or dessert.
Bartlett pears are known in the United States as the “canning pear” because they hold their shape and have a distinct flavor and sweetness when preserved. Approximately two-thirds of the Bartlett pear production in the United States is dedicated to producing purees, canning halves, slices, or pieces, and for pear juice. Canned pears are widely available at supermarkets, but some consumers choose to can their own pears at home boiling sugar, syrups, apple juice, or water with the pear slices. Canning pears at home is an excellent way to use up extra pears.
Because they don’t get mushy when heated, Bartlett pears are well-suited for cooking. Try glazing and grilling them the way you would peaches or using them in place of bananas or apples when baking. Pears add moistness and flavor to pancakes, quick breads, muffins, and crisps. Pears also make excellent preserves, syrups, and chutneys.
Sending fresh fruit as a gift is always a great idea, because fruit always fits! Pear baskets or gift boxes from Hale Groves are especially welcome, because you’re sure to get the highest quality fruit available. On the Hale Groves web site you can find pears for sale on their own or grouped together with other fruits and gourmet treats. We also include pears in our Monthly Fruit Clubs, so your recipients can enjoy pears along with many other wonderful, delicious, and healthy fruits!
Great for cooking, eating fresh, or adding to your favorite dishes, Bartlett Pears are rich in essential antioxidants, plant compounds, fiber, vitamins, and minerals. So don’t forget to include Bartlett pears in your fall fruit lineup!