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Saturday, September 17, 2011

Prickly Pears (Cactus Fruit) Jam

If you've never eaten cactus fruit (prickly pear)before, you must have a try.  I must admit, it is an acquired taste but not unpleasant.  In my opinion, it is a mix of melon and pineapple.  The fruit is as big as a duck egg with thick coarse skin with tiny prickly spines which can be very irritating when stuck in bare hands.  The fruit flesh ranges in colour from yellow to orange, or dark burgundy which makes it good for cocktails.
What is even better is to make jam !  

Here is what I did with 10 pcs of fruit (country of origin : Spain) from the local market.

You need :
10 pcs cactus fruit (500ml fruit puree)
500g jelly sugar (2: 1)
Juice from 2 lemons
a pair of gloves
Put on gloves.
Slice off both ends of fruit and peel skin off.
Place peeled fruits into a pan and slow cook (without adding any water or liquid)
till fruits are soft.  
Strain through a sieve to remove the nasty black seeds. 
Cook liquid again, adding lemon juice and jelly sugar.
Cook a further 10 minutes and bottle immediately.     

Note: This jam taste totally different from the fresh fruit.  It is pineapple and pomegrate with a touch of caramel. The colour is  rich golden amber.

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