There's been a massive heat wave this past week here in Culver City, and in response I decided to avoid using the oven at all costs. This was pretty easy to do, (thanks, microwave!), but it still didn't keep the heat down in the apartment. So, I cooled down the only way I knew how. I ate lots and lots of fruit from the refrigerator. Mmmmm cold fruit, so juicy and wet and refreshing. I threw together this fruit salad with some prickly pears I found at Albertson's. I'd never used prickly pears to make anything before, but I had them juiced in mixed drinks and it always tasted pretty good. So, I ventured to make a tasty fruit salad with them! They're called prickly pears because they're shaped like pears but grow on cactuses, and have tiny brown circles on the outside of them that have small furry, prickly bristles that will come off onto your skin, so take caution when preparing them. I read online that they are usually juiced, but could also be eaten plain after you peel them, as long as you don't mind the seeds which are apparently edible. Well, I juiced one of the prickly pears to pour over the salad and cut up the other one to put in the salad, and I can honestly say that I wish I would've juiced both of them. It's not that the flesh of the fruit didn't taste good, it has a great honeydew melon type flavor, but there were SO many seeds and they were fairly large and really hard, not something that I would just swallow massive amounts of. So, if you don't have any problem with seeds, then feel free to cut one up and put it in the salad, but if you have a tough time eating a large amount of seeds, then juice both of them and pour the syrupy juice over the salad. Enjoy!
1 Banana, cut into slices
2 Prickly Pears
1 Tangerine, peeled and separated by slice
Cut the pluots in half, remove and discard their pits, and cut each of the pluots into sixths. Place the banana, pluots and tangerine slices into a medium sized bowl, stir so that thefruits are evenly distributed, and set aside. Cut a vertical line down the side of one of the prickly pears, then cut the top and bottom off. Now, place your finger underneath the vertical line and grab ahold of the pear's skin. Peel the skin off and discard it. Repeat this process with the other prickly pear. Now, you can either slice one of the prickly pears and put it in the salad, if you don't mind lots of hard seeds, or you can slice up both of the prickly pears and push the slices through a sieve held over the bowl of fruit so that all of the juices from the prickly pears fall over the fruit. Garnish with one remaining slice of prickly pear and serve cold.