P E A R S are such a great autumnal treat! I love how nature provides seasonal fruit and vegetables at the exact time of year that you need them the most. Like how autumn is the season of dryness and an asian pear is one of the best natural remedies to help moisten and regenerate body fluids. It's like a gift from Mother Earth saying "here, eat this to stay healthy!"
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, asian pears (which are kind of a mix between an apple and a pear) are used to help treat dry cough by poaching or steaming the pear and drinking the fluid as well as eating the fruit. It's thermal property is cold so this helps extinguish any heat in the body, particularly in the lungs, spleen, and stomach. Domestic pears like anjou, bartlett, and bosc have a similar effect, just a little milder, so feel free to use any variety your heart desires. My family got a terrible cough last fall so I fed us all local pears and their liquid as though it were cough syrup, among other things, to help treat the illness. I will always use this tasty home remedy at the first sign of a tickle in my throat, so long as pears are in season. Oh yeah, and only ever organic! Non-organic pear orchards typically receive nine applications of nasty pesticides each season making them one of the most toxic fruit in the produce aisle (this according to The New Whole Foods Encyclopedia by Rebecca Wood).
The best part of feeding my kids poached pears is that they actually like the taste! It's super easy to shove a few pears in a pan in the oven with some filtered water, a stick or two of cinnamon, drizzle a little honey, and call it dessert - that's my favourite way to prepare it. As mentioned you can also steam the fruit and drink the liquid that way. Natural remedies work best when used preventatively, at the very first symptom, but in the case where the cough is already fully present and you are really trying to kick it then I would first remove the skin and core, then cook the pear by simmering it in a pot of water - stove top for at least 20 minutes. Keep it covered in the water, add honey (which is also good for nourishing body fluids) if desired, and mash the entire pot - creating a sauce. Take the sauce at least three times per day to experience it's benefit.
I made this just the other day and took these photos of my fav prep method:
At this point I should also mention my disclaimer! This is not to be replaced as medical advice. In the event of a serious condition, please seek treatment from your local health care professional. Thank you, and I hope you enjoy these last few weeks of autumn and all that the season has to offer!