Prickly pears

Prickly pear fruit tree

The fruit tree of the Prickly Pear is a plant of the Cactus family, instead of the leaves there are cladodes or blades, which group together and form branches. The cladodes, after four years, lignify, forming a real trunk. In order to withstand high temperatures they are covered with a wax, which prevents perspiration. The blades are covered with thorns, as are the fruits, which are fleshy and sweet, whose color changes according to the quality. The fruit tree of prickly pears, due to its characteristics, is also called: desert plant, in fact it adapts to conditions of extreme heat during the day and cold at night, a typical climate of desert areas. The flowers are very showy, hermaphroditic, yellow or orange in color, which varies according to the species they belong to.

Use and consumption of prickly pears

The use and consumption of prickly pears is very varied. The fruit is eaten raw or used for culinary preparations. Thanks to its vitamin content it was used to fight diseases such as scurvy. Today it is known that due to the presence of antioxidants, it is a very precious fruit. In the kitchen, especially in regional kitchens, the use and consumption of prickly pears are widespread. For example, an excellent liqueur is produced by putting its pulp to macerate in alcohol at 90 ° with sugar. Even the prickly pear peels can be cooked, in fact they are passed in the beaten egg and fried, then sprinkled with sugar, a real delicacy of Salento cuisine. With red quality fruits, a truly exquisite jam is obtained, with a beautiful ruby ​​color.

The properties of prickly pears

The properties of prickly pears are manifold. The juice extracted from the pulp is rich in minerals, vitamins and antioxidants. The pulp has diuretic and laxative properties, furthermore its fiber is precious to give a sense of satiety to those who follow a low-calorie diet. It seems that among the properties of prickly pears there is that of limiting the absorption of fats and sugars, a very important quality for people who have to control blood sugar and overweight. Another virtue, always for those who care about the figure: this fruit also contains vitamin B3, which helps slow down the transformation of sugars into glycogen. It seems that prickly pears are also able to detoxify the body and therefore limit cellulite. Furthermore, thanks to its mineral salts components,

Prickly pears: The cosmetic use of prickly pears

The cosmetic use of prickly pears dates back to the dawn of time. Its remarkable virtues are contained in the pulp, which is extracted from cladodes. A real concentrate rich in mucilage, vitamins and trace elements, which are a panacea for the skin and beyond. Its recognized properties are: regenerating, healing, tonicizing, antioxidants and disinfectants. The cosmetic use of prickly pears also concerns its “milk”, a liquid that comes out of the blades. Valuable, thanks to its composition, for the production of hair and skin hygiene products. But that’s not enough, from the many seeds found in the pulp of prickly pears, a truly rare and precious oil is extracted. Its action is extraordinary to counteract the formation of wrinkles.

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