This is a tall glass of refreshment, made from in-season Korean pears, celery, fresh ginger, and mint. These particular pears are grown in Korea, but Asian pears are native to China, Japan, and Korea. While they taste like a cross between an apple and a pear, they are not a hybrid.
My CSA provides Asian pears at this time of year, so I was familiar with them. They have a thin, sweet skin and are richly juicy. They are so juicy, in fact, that I prefer juicing them to using them in any other way. So when I received a box of imported Korean pears from Melissa’s Produce, I knew I was going to be juicing them for my post. The ones from Melissa’s are HUGE, nearly a pound apiece due to special pampering as they grow. (See the posts from Jolly Tomato or Shockingly Delicious for more details.)
I thought that the light crisp taste of celery would be a wonderful compliment to the pears, with fresh ginger and mint adding more depth of flavor and spice. You can drink this as is… or you can turn it into the lovely frozen granita below. If you can’t find Asian or Korean pears, you can use any firm pear for this recipe. One advantage to Asian pears is that they don’t turn brown after being juiced or cut. If you use regular pears, plan on drinking the juice right away, or add a touch of lime juice to your granita to prevent browning.
Fresh Asian pear juice with celery, ginger, and mint
1 large or 2 small Asian, Korean, or other pears
3 stalks celery
1 thin slice of fresh ginger
3-4 sprigs fresh mint
Wash all the produce, and remove any poor spots. Juice everything and serve immediately.Asian pear-celery-ginger-mint granita
Pour the juice (above) into a large shallow dish and put it in the freezer. After about an hour, rake it up with a fork. Rake every 30 minutes until you have fluffy, snow-like crystals. Here’s a demo video on making granita, with a cameo by Buddy Girl:
Finally, I just pulled these Korean pear chips out of the dehydrator and they are madly good. So intensely sweet they almost taste like candied ginger. I cored them, sliced very thinly with a mandoline, then dehydrated for 3 days at 135F.
Want more Korean pear ideas?
Korean pear coleslaw, Gangnam style from The Jolly Tomato
Asian pear salad from White on Rice
Asian pear clafoutis from She’s Cookin
10 things to do with Korean pears from Shockingly Delicious
Honey-glazed Korean pears baked in wonton crisps with honey-cinnamon mascarpone from Cooking on the Weekends
Required FTC disclosure: The Korean pears were provided by Melissa’s Produce. I was not paid to write this post.
All of our recipes are gluten-free, sugar-free, and made with plant-based ingredients to help you build a healthy life. We support Meatless Monday. Look for midweek essays and Friday how-to and giveaways (when available).
So glad I finally bought an apple corer! Works great on Asian pears too!