Sunday, December 25, 2011

Plant: Prickly pears....pick it wild or buy..relish anyway....

Prickly pear...
It was delightful to see the sprawling cacti shrub studded with numerous pink buds, in the marsh of Upper Newport Bay. Soon the spiny cladodes will be covered with the fully open luscious flowers. It's going to be a spring herald.

And months later, they will be replaced by luscious fruits...... hen egg-sized, juicy, crimson berries studded to a cactus cladode...

These cacti fruits, also called India fig are edible....used to prepare candies, jellies and beverages. Grown in backyards or gardens...prevalent in the chaparrals and South Western deserts.... 

even in our neighborhood....by the  streets side......

It's not that I had not relished prickly pears before...in fact I had plucked the opulent ripe fruits from the edges of Upper Newport Bay marshes and made a lunch of them, a couple of times...
But, there's a downside to it, I could never get rid of the minute spines and ended up being pricked...

So, I bought these succulent fruits from a San Diego Mexican store ...

Some of them were yellow-skinned...

with orange pulp....

some were red skinned....

with deep pinkish pulp

Both varieties were delicious...with a price tag of 99 cents for a pound it was a bargain, I guess...considering its tropical taste and nutrient goodness..

Anybody living in South California can get it for free in the wilderness..
Its clicked at Laguna beach shore...

My published paper on nutritional importance of these  succulent fruits....see the link below..

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Visitor

Free counters!