Pears -- delicately sweet and nutritious too -- are in season.
Some varieties, such as the bartletts, seckel and concorde, will be gone in just a few weeks. But other varieties, bosc, comice, forelle and red and green anjous, will be in stores into the spring.
If the only way you eat pears is fresh, you're missing out on this versatile fruit.
Pears make a tasty and juicy addition to sandwiches, a great breakfast smoothie and a savory sidedish when roasted and served with pork or chicken.
You can find recipes for these and many more on the Pear Bureau Northwest website, www.usapears.com.
While there, check out the pear-aphenalia for sale. They have handy gadgets for coring and slicing in one easy stroke, a pear and cheese serving set, even a plastic pear protector to prevent bruising when toting pears to school and work.
Crab feed for charity
The Kiwanis Club of Pasco plans its fourth annual crab feed at 7 p.m. Jan. 24-25 at Camp Kiwanis, between Edison Street and Columbia Center Boulevard, in Columbia Park.
For $35, you get all-you-can-eat crab, clam chowder, beans, salad and a roll.
For tickets, call Darin Oman, 521-1200 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Proceeds will be used to help children in the community.
Easy, savory roasts
Don't put away your roasting pan just because the holidays are over; many more foods can be roasted besides turkey or beef. Roasting simply is a dry-heat method of oven-cooking foods in an uncovered pan.
According to the Williams-Sonoma Collection Series, Roasting, by Barbara Grunes, roasting works well for tender cuts of meat with plenty of marbled interior fat, for poultry with the skin on or for seafood, which is lean but cooks quickly enough that it will not dry out in the oven.
Some vegetables and fruits, including potatoes and other root vegetables, apples and pears, also take well to roasting.
Because preparations for roasting are minimal -- trussing, trimming, seasoning, stuffing, marinating -- once the food is in the oven, your work is almost done.
The book: Good Stock: Life on a Slow Simmer by Chef Sanford D'Amato.
Best for: The author has written his life's story from being an Italian boy who loved food to an untried culinary student with a passion for French cuisine to one of the most respected chefs and restaurateurs in the United States. He's included more than 80 recipes and photos along with his memoir.