The Anjou pear is bright green, sometimes with a light red blush and they are recognizable by their egg shaped appearance. When the Anjou is fully ripe, they are juicy with a subtle sweetness and hints of refreshing lemon-lime flavor.
Truly an all purpose pear. Anjous are a great pear for salad and also when eaten fresh out of the hand. In addition, their dense flesh holds up well when heated so they are excellent for baking, poaching, grilling and roasting.
It is very important to note that Anjou pears do not change color as they ripen. Unlike Bartletts, another familiar green pear variety whose skin color does change to yellow during ripening, Green Anjous will remain green even when fully ripe. It is best to ripen Anjou pears at room temperature. Depending on their level of ripeness when purchased, Anjou pears may take between three and five days to become fully ripe. Once ripe, you can store them in the refrigerator, where the ripening process will be slowed for a few more days.
Check the Neck for Ripeness™ daily by gently pressing your thumb near the stem end of the pear. When it gives slightly, the pear is ripe. Why do you “Check the Neck?” Because pears ripen from the inside out, and the neck is the narrowest part of the pear, which is closest to the core. If you wait for the wider, bottom half of the pear to become soft to the touch, you’ll find the inside to be over-ripe. When that happens, though the mouth-feel may not be perfect for eating fresh, this is the perfect time for your super-ripe pear to be pureed into a tasty smoothie!
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