Foraging for edible wild plants in Texas

Meriweather has a meticulously documented website, Foraging Texas, devoted to edible wild plants in Texas. Lots of these plants are elsewhere too so bon appetit!


Cow’s Tongue Cactus

Scientific Name(s): Opuntia engelmannii var. linguiformis
What: pads, flowers, fruit
How: peeled pads can be pickled, fried, made into jerky; fruit can be raw or blended into a smoothy/icee drink; juice from strained fruit can be drunk, made into ice cream, mixed drinks, preserves.
Where: sunny fields, landscaping
When: fruit in fall, pads-all year though younger pads taste better.
Nutritional Value: vitamin C, some minerals
Dangers: burn or scrap off the tiny needles (glochids) before eating, 1% of population is allergic to cactus-based foods.

One comment

  1. Called ‘Prickly Pear’ here it is a popular here among Italian migrants as it grows wild is Sicily. Some shops sell the fruit. While still used in landscaping, esp for that Spanish look, it is delegated as a noxious plant having colonised most of Australia.

    Prickly Pear spread in Australia

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