Fun with Nopales

My friend Sara is working on a really great book and needed a little help in dealing with nopales. I'm too happy to offer my opinion about anything and the chance to share my cactus paddle love makes me hit High-C in particular.

Nopal-with-cheese1

The first thing we did was make grilled nopal-cheese sandwiches. After cleaning the paddles, you rub them with salt and olive oil. Then on to the grill until they are cooked.
You take a paddle, add some cheese (Oaxacan or Mozzarella is best, but Jack will do in a pinch) and then add another paddle on top of it. You should grill just a little bit longer until the cheese melts.

Nopal-with-cheese2

Now, take some red salsa fresca and smother the paddles with it. I think it's something pretty grand!

Nopal-with-cheese

We also played around with nopales in a salad and my old tried-and-true version hit home. Tomatoes, cooked nopalitos, onion rings, garlic, queso fresco, chopped epzote, olive oil, pineapple vinegar and salt to taste.

Nopal-salad

I could live on this stuff!

2 Comments on Fun with Nopales

  1. That is just gorgeous. My grandmother never did any dishes with nopales that I can recall, but I’ve always been curious about them, and this looks like a great way to start.

    Our cheesemonger has great queso fresco and queso blanco – would either of those work or should we just go for mozzarella?

  2. The queso fresco isn’t right and I don’t know the blanco. You want a gooey indulgent string type cheese. Have fun!

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