Succulent Asian Pears
It's almost time to pick Asian pears.
With some Asian pear varieties (mostly the brown-skinned ones), the moist, crisp flesh is flushed with an aromatic perfume and complex mixture of exotic flavors not to be found in any other fruit. I was fortunate, back in 1975, to have sampled a large, brown-russeted variety known in Chinatown only as a "Korean pear". I had to dig deep into my thin wallet to sample these exotic fruits. Air-shipped from the Orient, these 3/4 pound fruits cost nearly $3.00 each (in 1975 dollars!). But the cost was worth the discovery of this exquisite, aromatic fruit. These brown-skinned beauties, which I have come to know as the Asian pear variety 'Hosui', have a rich, complex aroma and flavor that, if left to fully ripen on the tree, is remarkably similar to an earthy-brandy flavor blended with the subtle essence of other ripened fruits. The scent of fully-ripened 'Hosui' fruit can be sensed well-before the fruit reaches your mouth. Once you begin to savor this succulent, aromatic variety, the complex fragrance spills forth in a riot of aroma—a friend sitting next to you will also smell the glorious fragrance.