Perhaps you have seen them before. Perhaps you may have even eaten them. But there may be some among you who have never set eyes on these curious fruits. They go by the name of prickly pears. And prickly they certainly are. But pears? That they are not.
The prickly pear is the fruit of a cactus known as Opuntia ficus-india which was introduced to the Mediterranean from the Americas. It grows liberally here and even with no care at all, these cacti are usually laden with fruit at this time of year.
The fruit comes in three distinct colours: white, yellowish-orange and red. Once the firm, prickly skin is removed, the fleshy fruit can be eaten. Most prickly pears are very sweet and have a very characteristic taste. Here in Malta a liqueur called Bajtra (pronounced Baytra) is made from the fruit.
I thought the red colour of these fruit would make an appropriate entry for this week’s Ruby Tuesday.
If you are interested in seeing other posts featuring the colour red, please visit Mary at Work of the Poet.