Monday, July 8, 2013

Roasted Nopales (prickly pear cactus pads)

I have another Cactus recipe for you.  That's right, did you know that Nopales aka Prickly Pear Cactus pads are edible?  If you're ever out camping in the desert and need a quick snack here is an option for you. ;)

But seriously, we got these (de-thorned) pads in a recent CSA box.  That's how you know you live in Arizona when your CSA box has cactus in the summer instead of blueberries.  We'd received them once before and I made a onion cactus dish.  Since the Nopales resemble Okra with the mucilaginous (sliminess) texture I decided to give our roasted okra recipe a whirl.  It's a simple way to cook up the cactus pads.  They retain the lemon-like pucker and provide a bit of a flavorful kick as a side dish.  How do you eat your cactus?

Roasted Nopales
1 pound of fresh nopales (de-thorned), sliced 1/3 inch thick.
Olive oil
Salt (I recommend sea salt) to taste
Black pepper, to taste

Directions: Preheat oven to 425 Arrange the nopales slices in one layer on a foil lined cookie sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes or until brown and toasty. We prefer it more on the toasty/crisp side.

Look here for a Sauteed Nopales

1 comment:

  1. I am preparing a taco filling of nopalitos and carmelized onion with tomato/chili sauce. I was hoping that someone had tried roasting the nopalitos!! Seems to be a nice way to deal with the sliminess (love roasted okra too) rather than sauteing them. Roasted asparagus is also nice, and nopales remind me a bit of asparagus.