Cactus Paddle Salad (Nopales Salad)
photo by Stephanie Y.
- Ready In:
- 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
- 4 medium nopales, trimmed, scraped, cut into strips
- 1 large tomatoes, cored, peeled, diced
- 1 small onion, diced
- 6 fresh cilantro stems, chopped
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar or 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
- 1⁄8 teaspoon oregano
- 1⁄8 teaspoon salt
- 8 romaine lettuce leaves
- 3 tablespoons queso fresco, Mexican, crumbled
- 2 pickled jalapeno peppers, drained, sliced
- 8 radishes, thinly sliced
- Heat 6 inches of water and 1/2 teaspoon of the salt to a boil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat.
- Add the cactus and boil, uncovered, until tender, about 20 minutes.
- Drain the cactus and transfer it to a large bowl.
- Add tomato, onion and cilantro; set aside.
- Whisk together the oil, vinegar, oregano and salt; pour over the vegetables and toss.
- Line a platter with lettuce leaves; top with salad; sprinkle with cheese; garnish with jalapenos and radish slices.
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RECIPE SUBMITTED BY
<p>I have always loved to cook. When I was little, I cooked with my Grandmother who had endless patience and extraordinary skill as a baker. And I cooked with my Mother, who had a set repertoire, but taught me many basics. Then I spent a summer with a French cousin who opened up a whole new world of cooking. And I grew up in New York City, which meant that I was surrounded by all varieties of wonderful food, from great bagels and white fish to all the wonders of Chinatown and Little Italy, from German to Spanish to Mexican to Puerto Rican to Cuban, not to mention Cuban-Chinese. And my parents loved good food, so I grew up eating things like roasted peppers, anchovies, cheeses, charcuterie, as well as burgers and the like. In my own cooking I try to use organics as much as possible; I never use canned soup or cake mix and, other than a cheese steak if I'm in Philly or pizza by the slice in New York, I don't eat fast food. So, while I think I eat and cook just about everything, I do have friends who think I'm picky--just because the only thing I've ever had from McDonald's is a diet Coke (and maybe a frie or two). I have collected literally hundreds of recipes, clipped from the Times or magazines, copied down from friends, cajoled out of restaurant chefs. Little by little, I am pulling out the ones I've made and loved and posting them here. Maybe someday, every drawer in my apartment won't crammed with recipes. (Of course, I'll always have those shelves crammed with cookbooks.) I'm still amazed and delighted by the friendliness and the incredible knowledge of the people here. 'Zaar has been a wonderful discovery for me.</p>