prickly pear time

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Its been some years since there has been adequate prickly pear fruit (tuna) to work with in this area.  2009 to be exact, and then the fruit wasn’t ripe until early/mid October.  This year there is a pretty decent amount out there that can be harvested without taking away from the critters that use this as food.

The white basket is made from the bottom of a milk container.  Tuna has thorns and this way I’m not getting stuck while walking. It holds about 2 doz tuna.  The tongs that are holding the fruit to burn off those thorns are the same tongs used to pick it.  After burning off the thorns, it goes into a pot with a bit of water and gets boiled down. Use a knife to put some cuts in the skin and then a masher of some type to break them down.  Strain off the skins.

Will be working a couple of dozen at a time, so each will go into a jar in the fridge until there’s enough to make jelly.  In the past have made prickly pear fruit leather. This year have found a low sugar pectin that should let me make a good jelly.

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