Last week at Super King Market, I continued my quest to purchase fruits and vegetables I’ve never purchased before, and came home with a Yali Pear.
I had high hopes for my little Yali, because pears (specifically Bartlett and Anjou) are perhaps my favorite of all fruits. Some internet research yielded very little information – Yalis are a variety of Asian pears that originated in China, are high in Vitamin C, and have very white, sweet, juicy flesh.
Not this Yali.
I cut mine open and found this:
It was brown. Let’s take a look from a slightly different angle:
Yep – still brown.
I cut a very small piece off and tried it – it was mealy and bitter. Like so many at-risk youths, this pear had gone bad.
I tried to look up information on why or how a pear ends up like this, and, again, didn’t find much – except for a brief mention of ‘brown core’ being “an internal disorder sometimes seen in pears under controlled atmosphere storage.” That’s courtesy of Volume 17 Issue 8 of the academic journal Food Control, which featured an article on Yali pears in August 2006. Some researchers at the College of Food Science and Nutritional Engineering at China Agricultural University in Beijing devised a way to determine if Yalis have a brown core without cutting into the fruit – apparently brown core is common enough to warrant academic papers and studies! I don’t quite understand what the test entails – as I have no idea what ‘transmission visible–NIR spectroscopy’ is (sounds like magic to me), but my Yali failed. It made it all the way from China to North Hollywood, CA, with a brown core.
So my brown core Yali ended up someplace where very little of my uneaten produce ends up – in the trash can. I had a plum instead. Its core was succulent and delicious, thank you very much.
Will I try another Yali? Maybe. If I do, you’ll be sure to hear about it.
Keep it up, David!