Nopales? Yes, pa-leese!
Visit Gilbert Quintos farm at the North Park Farmers’ Market for fresh nopales, the tender, edible shoots of the nopal cactus that are also known as prickly pear. Look for flat green pads about the size of your hand, and be careful; the sharp spines may still be attached! If they are, use a vegetable peeler to remove them. Then brush them with a little olive oil and throw them on the grill, about five minutes on each side; enjoy them in a taco with grilled green onions from Kawano Farm, or serve them with a grass fed strip steak from DaLe Ranch.
To enjoy nopales in a salad or scrambled into farm fresh eggs form Paradise Valley Ranch, first cut them into strips, cook them in simmering water for about twenty minutes and allow them to cool. They have a little of the slimy quality of okra, so you may want to rinse and add fresh salted water halfway through. Then toss them with any of your favorite vegetables like radishes and tomatoes, from JR Organics or Valdivia Farms, and top with a sliced avocado and a squeeze of fresh lime. Pick up sweet potatoes from Proios Farm and try this lovely salad. Say yes to nopales this Thursday!