Prickly Pear Recipes

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Red Kidney Bean Tostada with Nopales Recipe

Tostadas are deep-fried corn tortillas presented in the form of a flat, open-faced sandwich. I made a slightly smaller version for appetizers, called tostaditas. You can fill them with anything you like; I played with different textures and flavors, and settled on something Lulu had while we were on vacation in Cancun. I added grilled nopales (segments from prickly pears), corn and tomato salsa and topped the appetizers with mini red kidney bean burgers, crumbled queso fresco and Mexican sour cream both from our friends over at Karoun Cheese

I love the fact that you could eat these in one-to-two bites. You can feel both the freshness and spiciness from the vegetables and the warmth and crunch from the tostada. I served them with little wedges of sweet limes from our garden to cut the heaviness of the cheese and sour cream. It's pure piece of heaven for  the mouth. Enjoy!

Mexican Risotto Recipe with Picture


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Prickly Pear Juice Recipe (Cactus Fruit) Recipe

Prickly pears are the fruit of the nopales cactus plant. They're named for their pear-like shape and size. The texture and aroma of the fruit is very similar to grainy watermelon, with a mild sweetness. The seeds from the prickly pears look the same as the ones from kiwis.

This weekend, my father-in-law (I call him Daddy), my husband Lulu and I were sitting on the swing in the garden. Daddy noticed the fruit on the cactus plants in the corner of our garden. When we got closer we realized that the prickly pears were fully ripe. Daddy got so excited that I didn't have time to run and get leather gardening gloves; he just picked the fruit with his bare hands. Poor Daddy! I had to spend quite a bit of time to remove all of the almost invisible hair-thin spines.

We were able to gather a fair amount of ripe fruit. Even though the fruit is quite bland, the flesh has a very rich color. I used some for making vinaigrette and with the rest I made little cocktails with raspberries. I placed fresh raspberries in the freezer and used them as ice cubes to chill the drink. If you can get your hands on some prickly pears at your local market, give them a try. They're a wonderful treat.

Prickly Pear Recipe with Picture


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