They grow here in California and the Southwest, the fruit of the, yeah, Prickly Pear cactus. Since they are common in Latin-American cuisine as well, they are easy to find. I found mine 7 for 99 cents at my favorite latino grocery, King Ranch (more about that here). They also come in the green variety, and they are good too. But I'm a sucker for any weirdly colored fruit, and that amazing bright pink color gets me every time!
I take a sharp knife and cut iff both ends.
Slice into medalions, or process whole, as you wish, depending on your recipe.
Here's 2 recipes:
Prickly Pear Fruit Salad with Lime and Chili:
4-5 Prickly Pears, peeled and sliced
1 medium pineapple, in chuncks
1/2 small watermelon, cubed
1 medium cucumber, sliced
2 mangoes, chunked or sliced
jicama, sliced into matchsticks (optional)
juice of 2 limes
red chili powder ( I like ancho or pasilla)
Arrange the fruit on a platter or in a pretty bowl. Chill well. Just before serving, sprinkle with the lime juice, then the chili powder and a little sea salt. Serve with chili and salt on the side of your guests want to add more... this can be served in lieu of a salad. Its delicious and refreshing.