Sliced Prickly Dona Maria Nopalitos Pear cactus shoots, cooked. Sliced Cactus Pads.
NOPALITOS OR NOPALES
Nopalitos – Cactus, or Nopal, is a typical sight in the Mexican landscape. It is not strange that it should find its way into the local cuisine. The use of Nopalitos has its origins in the Roman Catholic observance of serving meatless dishes during Lent; now they are a part of everyday cooking.
The paddle, or tender pads, of the plant (called prickly pear in the U.S.) are eaten as a green vegetable in Mexico. The best young shoots are packed fresh, pickled or preserved.
Sliced for convenience, their use lends itself to a variety of dishes, such as traditional nopalitos salad or soup. Combined with seafood, omelets, quiches, and casseroles, nopalitos adds a delicious and authentic flair.
It is believed that one of nopalitos (nopal cactus) properties is a natural diabetes and cholesterol medication, and its also used in the treatment of obesity, gastrointestinal disorders, skin ailments, and viral infections.
NOPALITOS AND LIME SALAD
1 (425g) jar DONA MARIA nopalitos, drained and rinsed
1½ cups tomato wedges
1 avocado, peeled, seeded and cut into chunks
1/4 cup vegetable oil
6 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
Combine nopalitos, tomato wedges, and avocado in a medium serving dish. Combine oil, lime juice, sugar, cumin and salt. Pour over nopalito mixture and mix well. Garnish with fresh cilantro. Chill and serve. Serves 6.