The Opuntia ficus-indica, also known as Indian fig or prickly pear, is one of the best known of the Nopal species. The prickly pear has culinary as well as medicinal uses, and was realtively easily avaialble in the United States by the 19th century. In 1889, Hester Martha Hunt recommended them in her Fruits and How to Use Them; she advised the reader to eat them sliced and dusted with powdered sugar. And Thomas Jefferson Murrey's 1884 book on Murrey's Salads and Sauces featured a Prickly-Pear Salad similar to Hunt's recipe - but with added lashings of orange juice and "a wineglassful of brandy."
|Prickly pear for sale in Mexico|
[Images from Wikimedia Commons.]