Last week me and the boys were toolin around the Southland, as we so often do, in search of an adventure or some cool park play toys. Rollin down Avenue O, we came across Pete’s Fresh Market. This store is incredible. It is brand new, the size of a Jewel but twice as beautiful. On top of that, it is a Mexican supermarket. The produce was beautiful: I got Plantains, Papaya(cheap), Guava, Parcha, I got 3 pounds of Jalapenos for $1.49 (We will be seeing them in an upcoming episode). I got 12 limes for a dollar. And Mexican spices and dried peppers, forget about it. The meat case was immaculate; I ended up getting my pork shoulder, for the pork tacos, there. But I went in only looking for one thing: Opuntia phaeacantha; the purple prickly pear.
It must be about ten years about now that I came across an article about soaking the fruit in tequila (infused liquors for youse fancy pants). Well I lost the article and an internet search did not turn up anything, so here’s what I did: I carefully peeled (using a vegetable peeler) about a dozen or so fruits, sliced them and poured a liter of white (no Cuervo) tequila over them.
I don’t know how long it should set, but the liquor had taken the purple color overnight. I haven’t tasted it yet either, but what I remember from ten years ago is that the prickly pear adds a tart taste and a floral aroma to the liquid. I'll let it go until I am ready to make some drinks. From there we will make some purple margaritas or maybe just a tiny tumbler with cracked ice and a sugar cube.
S looked for prickly pears (also called tunas) earlier in the year and she was told there is season for the fruit which lasts around July. So go get em. It will be great for that late summer garden party.
There are two kinds of tunas that you may come across at the store: Purple and white. Don’t get white. They both have green skins but you will notice a reddish hue to the purple ones. When selecting think of selecting an avocado ($.79 each at Pete’s): Not too hard and not too mushy. The fruit itself is very fibrous and has lots of seeds so you may have to strain it, but I think it is gonna be good. Stay tuned.