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Prickly Pear & Wild White Sage Syrup

I’ve been spending my days in a desert by the Sea.  The sweet California coast.
I found this amazingly ripe patch of prickly pear on a hike the other day.  Wow.  So juicy and ripe and ready to go.
Look at the color of these amazing babies.  Decided to harvest a few and make something nice :

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I had my handy dandy knife with me so cutting was a good method to use.  You can use tongs to pluck them off as well.  Be careful with these babies!  They’re covered in  trickster needles that look like sweet cotton puff but don’t be fooled!  These hairs are called “glochids” and they’ll cover your fingers like a hair on a dogs back if you don’t work mindfully.  I’ve found that even when I’m careful I get pricked a bit still, but no worries.  Just a little bit of cactus medicine to make us extra sharp.  Don’t let it stop you from enjoying this abundant desert fruit.

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So I decided to make something real special
with these sweet babies…
Prickly Pear & Wild White Sage Syrup.

To drizzle on everything from ice cream, to salads,
butternut squash soup, curry, savory potatoes, whatever.
Sky’s the limit.  A truly wild treat.
I really love having something sweet to go with my savory food.
I’m also the kind of girl who lived off of hard toast
covered in peanut butter, jelly, fried egg, cheese,
covered in hot sauce in my early 20’s so don’t take my word for it..

Let us begin!  How to prepare the Prickly Pear.
First you wanna put the sweet babies in a bowl and swirl ’em around in water,
wash ’em, stir ’em, make ’em dance in the water and lose their glochid hairs.
Rinse Rinse Rinse!
This will enable you to touch with your bare hands.

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Next set them out to slice.  Cut into 1/4’s or so, and leave the skins on.
We want to use the whole entire fruit.  Seeds & all.

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 Place your sliced prickly pear into a blender.
Mash ’em down a bit, so the juices start flowing and you can blend with ease.
We’re just gonna make a slurry.

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10151335_10203776114259191_5793838156415934597_nSee.  A slurry.  Kinda juicy and mashy and ready to blend.

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Blend your slurry and then strain through a fine mesh, or clean piece of fabric.
I just used a cotton napkin I had laying around and it worked just fine.

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 Maybe you want to take a moment to play with the seeds,
remembering the seed spirit.
The mystery, new beginnings, infinite potential.
Let us honor our seeds::
Plant them in the Earth so that a new cactus may come through.

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Screen Shot 2014-11-26 at 12.18.01 PMMake sure you infuse your juice with peace vibes and take a reflective selfie while you’re at it
 Now you have beautiful, raw, vitalized wild prickly pear juice.
It is safe to drink and tastes like a miracle.
It’s supremely high in Vitamin-C and antioxidants.
The thing is it’s also a pretty strong medicine, so go slow.
Prickly pear is cooling and a diuretic.
It may give you the chills if you drink too much,
or perhaps it will cool you off just perfectly on a warm sunny day.
It also cleanses the urinary track system.
I can attest to this.

Even drinking a little bit of this sweet medicine,
I am peeing non-stop, pee’s that last forever.
I can feel it cleaning me out.  Wow.

To make Prickly Pear & Wild White Sage syrup combine :

Prickly Pear juice (2 dozen fruit yielded about 2 cups of juice)
Juice from 1/2 a lemon (this one came from a friends tree)
1/2 a cup of amazing local honey
a sprig of wild white sage leaves
=
Totally local & wild & from the land my dear

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10401392_10203788856537740_6270464350151828071_nwild sage from these lands

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Mix this combination in a little pot and simmer for 20 minutes.
I only leave the sage in for about half that time, maybe 10 minutes, tasting as I go to see how the flavor is coming along.
The sage is really aromatic and strong so you don’t want it to over power the prickly pear.
Stir &  stir & stir until you have a nice reduction and syrup formed.
Let it cool then store in the fridge for 1-2 weeks, in the freezer for longer.
Enjoy this ambrosia and share the love with your friends.
It is so easy to make, this wild magic.
A Blessing from the Land.

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With Love :: Holly Jean

 

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