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Red Comice Pears
Inventory, 25 lbs : 0
This item was last sold on : 01/18/19
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Red Comice pears range from small to large in size and have a distinctly squat shape, with a large, broad, bulbous bottom and a short, well-defined neck connecting to a thick dark brown stem. The maroon to deep red skin has prominent lenticels or pores and is smooth, thin, and bruises easily. The flesh is ivory to pale yellow and is silky, creamy, moist, and fine-grained. When ripe, Red Comice pears have buttery and very juicy texture, are highly aromatic, and have an exceptionally sweet, mellow, and earthy flavor with spice-like undertones.
Red Comice pears are available in the early fall through winter.
Red Comice pears, botanically classified as Pyrus communis, grow on semi-dwarf, compact trees that are members of the Rosaceae family along with apricots, peaches, and apples. Also known as the Doyenné Du Comice, Red Comice pears are a bud-sport or natural mutation that was discovered on a green comice tree in Oregon in the 1960s. Comice pears have also earned the moniker “Christmas Pear” because they are in peak season during the holiday months and are favored for their large size and balanced flavor. They are often placed in fruit bowls on dining tables as edible décor or are given in holiday gift baskets to friends and family.
Red Comice pears contain vitamin C, pectin, and fiber.
Red Comice pears are best suited for raw applications as their sweet, juicy, and soft flesh do not hold up well to cooking. They can be sliced and served alone, paired with creamy cheeses, added to leafy green salads, added to pancakes, mixed in with rice pudding, pureed into soups, or made into pear butter. Red Comice pears can also be canned or used in select baked goods such as a rugelach, which is a crescent-shaped pastry filled with seeds, chocolate, fruit, or nuts, made into a granita with green tea and honey to serve over ice cream, cooked into a compote with earl grey and vanilla, or even served in cocktails such as a spicy pear mojito. Red Comice pears compliment rosemary, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, anise, vanilla, burnt sugar, curry powder, turmeric, garam masala, raisins, almond, hazelnut, pecans, chestnuts, chicken, coconut, onion, garlic, sweet potatoes, arugula, cilantro, thyme, rosemary, maple syrup, camembert, gorgonzola, blue, and brie cheese. The delicate skin of the Red Comice pear can bruise or tear easily, but when handled properly, the pears will store well. They will keep 2-6 weeks when stored in the refrigerator. When kept at room temperature, they will keep for a couple days.
Comice pears only account for about one percent of the total pear production in the United States, but they are highly regarded by consumers as one of the sweetest and juiciest of all of the European varieties to be consumed fresh. Comice pear trees are also desired for home gardening and private orchards as they are one of the longest living varieties surviving up to seventy-five years. It is drought tolerant, prolific, and produces many succulent, flavorful fruits that can store well during the holiday season.
Comice pears were first cultivated in the mid-1800s near Angers, France and were introduced to the market in 1849. The first Red Comice pear appeared as a bud sport on a tree in Oregon in 1960. This first sport was yellow with red striping and a decade later the first all red sport appeared in the same region resulting in the creation of the Red Comice pear. Today, Red Comice pears can be found at farmers markets and grocery stores and are grown primarily in the Pacific Northwest of the United States and some areas in France.
Recipes that include Red Comice Pears. One is easiest, three is harder.
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