Author Topic: canning nopalitos -- ( opuntia, prickly pear, cactus pads)  (Read 988 times)

Offline mountainmoma

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canning nopalitos -- ( opuntia, prickly pear, cactus pads)
« on: June 18, 2020, 09:11:10 AM »
I have been lazy over the years and not done anything with the nopales, sometimes the fruit, but not the vegetable part of the cactus.  Some people in my family buy it canned and eat it in tacos, so I thought I should can some.

There are not alot of recipes to can this, I was a bit on my own. I canned 6 pints last night, pickled of course.  Looking to see if any has experience or better recipes in case I do a second batch. I pretty much did the Rootsimple method, where he had used an Okra recipe from the approved National food preservation site. https://www.rootsimple.com/2012/06/four-ways-to-preserve-prickly-pear-pads-nopales/ But, typically, it is canned with onions, peppers.  I added a bit of sugar, a piece of dried cayenne I grew out and dried years ago, a clove of garlic and a couple egyptian walking onion top bulbettes. 

First interesting thing is how much it shrunk when I blanched it, I got water boiling and plopped the thin slices in for 5 or 6 minutes.  I had measured out how much I was cutting by placing slices in a pint jar and filling it raw, so I sliced enough for 6 jars, but what I had was enough for 3 jars.  SO then I had to run the canner twice with half loads, a waste of time and energy.

Before that, what I had done was go out to the furthest along opuntia ( prickly pear) cactus plant and looked for new growth pads that are smaller and have the immature prickles on the faces, they still have a few actually prickles but mostly just a few on the edges.  I still got bit by the plnat because I did not pay attention leaning in to reach ! I used tongs and a knife, tossing them into a metal bowl. I ran a knife edge along the face and edge to take off prickles, and rinsed.  Then Before processing, I did this a second time a bit harder to get off the bumps too, and sliced off all edges, rinsed again.  SO totally safe cactus pads at that point. 


Offline LvsChant

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Re: canning nopalitos -- ( opuntia, prickly pear, cactus pads)
« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2020, 01:35:57 PM »
I've never tried this... but have liked the taste of them when I've had them in the past. When we lived in Ft worth, I had them served in breakfast burritos (along with egg, etc.) and thought they tasted a lot like green beans. Perhaps you could use a green bean recipe and just pressure can them as you would any low-acid vege? I'm pretty sure the nopalitos I tried were not pickled.

Offline mountainmoma

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Re: canning nopalitos -- ( opuntia, prickly pear, cactus pads)
« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2020, 09:10:48 PM »
I've never tried this... but have liked the taste of them when I've had them in the past. When we lived in Ft worth, I had them served in breakfast burritos (along with egg, etc.) and thought they tasted a lot like green beans. Perhaps you could use a green bean recipe and just pressure can them as you would any low-acid vege? I'm pretty sure the nopalitos I tried were not pickled.

They may have been cooking up fresh nopalitos

Offline Redman

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Re: canning nopalitos -- ( opuntia, prickly pear, cactus pads)
« Reply #3 on: June 19, 2020, 05:04:35 AM »
Here are a couple recipes from the internet MM. Search canning nopales, you will find more.

https://honest-food.net/nopales-en-escabeche/

https://www.rebootedmom.com/pickled-cactus-strips/

Offline mountainmoma

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Re: canning nopalitos -- ( opuntia, prickly pear, cactus pads)
« Reply #4 on: June 19, 2020, 09:15:02 AM »
Here are a couple recipes from the internet MM. Search canning nopales, you will find more.

https://honest-food.net/nopales-en-escabeche/

https://www.rebootedmom.com/pickled-cactus-strips/

Thanks, those two I saw also, I would worry that the first recipe might not be canning approved, they say you can can this, but they are realy using it fresh or refrigerated and the second had unusual spicing, as we would use in tacos and such -- But good to link as that spicing might not be unusual to others here !

But, I had not explored that honest food post well enough, as I realy like the ideas, it was linked on the pickled nopales, on how to de-slime and use nopales  https://honest-food.net/how-to-cook-nopales/

Offline Redman

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Re: canning nopalitos -- ( opuntia, prickly pear, cactus pads)
« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2020, 09:59:37 AM »
That first one is very similar to the taquriea jalepenos and carrots I've made. I keep that in the frig but I did check the ph and it should be good to water bath can.

Just for reference.
https://www.mexicanplease.com/taqueria-style-pickled-jalapenos-carrots/

Offline mountainmoma

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Re: canning nopalitos -- ( opuntia, prickly pear, cactus pads)
« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2020, 10:50:52 AM »
i will be pickling jalapenos at the end of summer when they are ready, everyone is looking forward to having those around. 

Offline Morning Sunshine

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Re: canning nopalitos -- ( opuntia, prickly pear, cactus pads)
« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2020, 01:46:56 PM »
I am watching this.  I would never have thought to can these.  Good thinking.