Pears are one of the few fruits that do not ripen completely on the tree; they are harvested when they have reached a certain size, but before they are fully ripe.
Although this may sound strange, it can come in handy if you don't want to immediately eat or find recipes for your pears.
Many varieties of pears have varying signs of ripeness, but in general, the Food Network suggests looking at the pear's neck.
According to Food Network, you should feel the necks of your pears to determine where the fruits are in the ripening process.
MasterClass explains that a ripe pear will be tender at the neck, not mushy but also not rock hard.
If you want to avoid having your pears turn overripe and mealy before you can enjoy them in a dish, it's best to inspect them thoroughly before buying.
Some pears can be left at room temperature to ripen naturally, while others can be placed in a paper bag and left to ripen at the same time.
Since bananas release even more ethylene gas during the ripening process than pears do, you can ripen them both at once to hasten the process.