Harvesting and Preparing Prickly Pear Fruit

Prickly pear fruits

Yesterday I harvested some prickly pear fruits, also known as “tunas” or sabras. These are the fruits of cacti in the Opuntia genus. As you might guess, these cactus plants are called “prickly” for a reason! But there is a way to harvest them easily and painlessly.

It’s a little different from the technique I showed you for harvesting nopales (the green pads of the same kind of cactus). In this video I’ll also show a method for burning off the spines and glochids from the fruits (glochids are those fine prickers that can be much more painful than the larger spines if they get in your skin) .

And there’s a step-by-step recipe in the video for prickly pear syrup, which is fantastic added to cocktails or used as the base for jelly, granita, or sorbet.

Okay, time for me to go turn those “tunas” I harvested yesterday into syrup!

Here’s the Prickly Pear video. Enjoy! Leda

Prickly Pear Syrup

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