WHY MAKE NOPAL CACTUS SALSA:
Chiles and (parboiled) corn get great flavor benefit from being blackened with some sort of hot flame.
Veggies in photo were treated with a butane torch but fan ovens or direct contact with gas burner or barbeque coals can produce similar blackening results.
* The special ingredient in this salsa is nopal cactus (AKA prickly pear or paddle cactus). When cooked, nopal cactus has a texture similar to okra, a bit soft n' slippery…okay, it’s downright ‘slimy’. But it's fabulous flavour shines in this salsa as it is well-balanced by a bit of crunchy raw onion & garlic plus the toothsome chaw of fresh corn.
- 1 ear yellow corn (boiled), charred and de-cobbed
- 2 medium tomatoes
- ½ red onion (sub: white/green)
- 5-10 fresh chiles, as available
- 1 440gm jar sliced nopal cactus
- 3-4 cloves garlic
- half bunch (10-20 sprigs) fresh cilantro (coriander leaf)
- fat pinch of ground cumin, toasted if possible
- 3 fat pinches of ground coriander, toasted if possible
- 2 Tbsp plain white vinegar
- black pepper and salt to taste
- hot sauce, if needed
Chop-together all ingredients. Include all blackened chile peels for roasty flavour. Chill for at least 1 hour. Serve with simple corn chips OR atop a nice piece of white fish with warm tortilla accompaniment.