How are you? Any sun peeking out where you live today? The weather here has been pretty rainy and miserable all week, but apparently we’re due for a sunny weekend so I’m keeping my fingers crossed! Today I’ve got another Spotlight on Fall Produce feature for you, but in case you’ve missed previous posts in these series, here’s a quick run-down of the fabulous fruits and veggies discussed so far:
This week, I want to talk about PEARS! In my opinion, pears are an underrated fruit – at least they were in my house until I re-discovered how tasty they are. Ignoring the fact that I can’t seem to eat one without having juice dribble down my chin onto my shirt, pears are incredibly versatile and I’ve been enjoying a lot of them recently. After all, one can only afford so many Honeycrisp apples. WHY does my favourite have to be the most expensive one!? Before I get into a recipe for you, let’s learn a few fun facts about pears, shall we?
- They’re one of the few fruits that don’t ripen fully on the tree, which is why they’re typically too firm when you buy them at the grocery store. They also ripen from the inside out.
- One average-sized pear contains only 100 calories, 0 fat, and provides 24% of the recommended daily allowance of fiber
- They are a member of the rose family
- Don’t store them near onions or potatoes because pears tend to absorb these smells
- Pears cause the fewest allergic reactions of all fruits
- More than 95% of pears sold in the US are grown in Washington, Oregon, or Northern California
- There are over 3000 pear varieties worldwide
Crunchy Pear and Pecan Salad
- 6 cups mixed greens
- 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced or cut int wedges
- 2 large stalks celery, thinly sliced
- 1 ripe pear
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 1/4 cup pepitas (or roasted pumpkin seeds – I got mine at Bulk Barn)
For the dressing:
- 2 tbsp cider, pear, raspberry or other fruit-infused vinegar
- 2 tbsp honey or maple syrup
- 2tsp extra virgin olive oil
- sea salt and black pepper, to taste
In a small dish or container with a lid, whisk together the vinegar, honey, and olive oil. Shake to ensure the mixture is combined, and season to taste with sea salt and black pepper. Set aside.
Core the pears and slice them thinly length-wise. In a large bowl, combine all salad ingredients. Drizzle with dressing and toss to coat.
The quantities stated in this recipe could serve 6 people if you were making this as a side salad to enjoy with dinner, or 4 if you were having it as a light lunch with a sandwich or soup. I prefer to keep the dressing fairly light on my salads, but feel free to add more or less depending on your taste preferences.
So tell me…
- What’s your favourite way to enjoy pears? Any recipes to share?
- Tell me about one healthy choice you’re going to make (or have already made) for yourself today.