Prickly Pear Cooking

December 10, 2014
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pink blooms on a prickly pear cactus
A lesson on harvesting and cooking prickly pear fruit from the Prickly Pear and Mesquite Festival at Superstition Mountain Museum

This post has been replaced by Cooking With Prickly Pear And Mesquite In Arizona.


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  • Reply
    Susan Cooper
    December 10, 2014 at 5:06 pm

    Hi Donna, What an interesting post. I have not cooked with prickly pear yet. Harvesting it does seem to sound like a lot of work, as does cooking and canning the jam. Think I’ll stick with you on this and buy it already prepared. ūüôā

    • Reply
      Donna Janke
      December 11, 2014 at 10:10 am

      Yes, it does seem a lot of work. I might try it if I could buy the fruit already cleaned of its glochids, but I am not usually in this part of the country during harvest season.

  • Reply
    Irene S. Levine
    December 10, 2014 at 8:52 pm

    Haven’t cooked with prickly pears but coincidentally, it was one of the ingredients the chefs were using in the Food TV Network’s “Chopped” last evening. Looks yummy!

    • Reply
      Donna Janke
      December 11, 2014 at 10:11 am

      Funny how those coincidences show up.

  • Reply
    Karen Warren
    December 11, 2014 at 4:41 am

    I didn’t know you could cook with prickly pears – I’d like to try it some time.

    • Reply
      Donna Janke
      December 11, 2014 at 10:15 am

      Prickly pear jams and syrups are readily found in the southwest states where prickly pear grows. I know prickly pear grows in other parts of the world, but I don’t know if is used for cooking in these places.

  • Reply
    jacquie
    December 11, 2014 at 5:51 am

    Who knew that you could cook with prickly pear??? How interesting! Like you, I’m not sure I’d go for harvesting them, but it does look good!

    • Reply
      Donna Janke
      December 11, 2014 at 10:18 am

      It fun to find out about ingredients in cooking you never knew about. I sometimes wonder how people figured out what they could safely eat and how best to cook it in the first place.

  • Reply
    Anita Oliver
    December 11, 2014 at 5:10 pm

    I remember tasting prickly pear candy as a kid when I grew up in California and I loved your post about how the fruit can be prepared and used to make many tasty dishes including jelly. We had prickley pear growing all over south Texas where we last lived and I always enjoyed the brightly colored yellow and red blooms.

  • Reply
    Donna Janke
    December 12, 2014 at 11:36 am

    I enjoyed hearing about how to prepare the fruit, even if it sounds a bit more involved than I am prepared to tackle. I love the blooms on the prickly pear cactus – so delicate and vibrant looking at the same time.

  • Reply
    SuzanneS
    December 12, 2014 at 6:37 pm

    I did not know you could eat them! I am glad that you tried it for me! Super interesting post!

  • Reply
    Ken Dowell
    November 16, 2016 at 4:05 pm

    I can’t say it’s the most appetizing looking thing. Never tried it but you’ve piqued my curiosity.

    • Reply
      Donna Janke
      November 18, 2016 at 5:26 pm

      Ken, the candy and preserves are actually sweet and tasty.

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