How to choose
Gorgeously golden Asian pears look like round, plump apples; sometimes skin appears slightly freckled. Choose firm, fragrant pears; they’re tree-ripened and ready to eat when purchased. Keep these hardy fruits at room temperature for ten days, or refrigerate up to three months.

Preparation tips
The crisp, slightly grainy flesh holds up beautifully in salads and sautés. Poach slices in white wine or green tea with fresh ginger and cardamom; serve drizzled with vanilla-flavored whipped cream. For a classy and simple appetizer, serve wedges with top-quality blue or goat cheese.

Health benefits
These juicy fruits provide vitamins A, C, and B-complex, plus fiber, calcium, and potassium.

Curried Shrimp Salad with Asian Pear
(Serves 6)

1/4 cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup low-fat mayonnaise
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1-1/2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
1 pound cooked medium shrimp (deveined and shells removed)
3 cups diced Asian pears
1 cup diced fresh mango
1/2 cup thinly sliced sweet onion
1/4 cup chopped pecans, lightly toasted
8 cups mixed salad greens

1. In a medium bowl, combine yogurt, mayonnaise, curry powder, lime juice, and ginger and mix well. Add shrimp and toss until shrimp is coated.

2. In a large serving bowl, combine diced pears, mango, onion, pecans, and greens; toss. Add shrimp-curry mixture to the greens mixture and toss until everything is lightly coated. Serve on chilled salad plates.

Nutrition Facts Per Serving:
Calories: 239 calories
% fat calories: 27
Fat: 7g
Saturated Fat: 1g
Cholesterol: 150mg
Protein: 21g
Carbohydrate: 24g
Fiber: 5g
Sodium: 170mg

This recipe is provided by James Rouse, ND, the creator of Optimum Wellness and The Fit Kitchen, seen weekly on NBC’s KUSA television news.