Nopales Cactus Leaf
Inventory, 30 lbs : 48.44
This item was last sold on : 11/25/23
Nopales, pronounced noh-pahl-es, are the pads or cladodes of the common edible cactus, ficus-indica. Harvested young for tenderness, the pads have sharp spines across its entirety that need to be handled carefully and removed before cooking and consumption. Large and mostly flat, the pads are usually only about half an inch thick and oval in shape. Nopales should be moderately bright green when fresh and fade to a muted olive green after cooking. The texture of Nopales is tender and slightly gelatinous with a tender toothsome crunch.
Nopales are available year-round with a peak season in mid-spring.
Nopales, botanically classified as Opuntia ficus-indica, was a source of nutritious food for Native Americans. This cacti was once used as a host plant for cochineal insects. Consuming the cacti moisture and nutrients turned the insects vibrant red, after which they would be processed for use in food grade dyes.
Nopales is an excellent source of vitamin A, C and B. Nopales cactus contains a large amount of antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties due to high concentrations of the bioflavonoid quercetin. Nopales is being studied as a possible treatment for type 2 diabetes due to its highly effective ability to stabilize the blood glucose levels in patients who consumed moderated amounts daily.
Nopales must always have its spines carefully removed before further preparations can be executed. Usually cooked, Nopales can be very refreshing and benefitting when blended raw with pineapple, orange and parsley for a morning smoothie. Blanched and sauteed with chorizo, Nopales make for a traditional accompaniment to eggs in the morning. Add to tortilla or chicken soup for texture and viscosity. Nopales are commonly blanched in salt water and added to salads with corn, fried jalapenos and black beans for a hearty lunch or light dinner. Fresh Nopales can be preserved by many methods, including pickled, canned, dehydrated or frozen.
Nopales is native to central Mexico, where evidence was found of its consumption as a food dating back 9,000 years. Nopales are commonly cultivated today in tropical and subtropical America, Mediterranean, tropical Africa, India and southeast Asia.
Restaurants currently purchasing this product as an ingredient for their menu.
|El Sueno||San Diego CA||619-972-6286|
|Herb & Wood Bar||San Diego CA||619-955-8495|
|Brigantine Del Mar||Del Mar CA||858-481-1166|
|Papalo||LA MESA CA||619-886-3034|
|Tahona (Kitchen)||San Diego CA||619-573-0289|
Recipes that include Nopales Cactus Leaf. One is easiest, three is harder.