Grilled Cactus and Corn Salad
4 nopales, or cactus paddles
1 cob of corn
Freshly ground black pepper
Juice of half a lime
2 tablespoons coarsely chopped cilantro
1/4 cup queso fresco
Clean and prepare the nopales (for instructions, see link below). Cut each paddle into 1/3-inch strips, leaving the stem end intact. It should resemble a fan or a hand. Brush with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Grill the nopales and corn until soft and slightly charred. The nopales should take about 5 minutes on each side; cooking time for the corn depends on your grilling method. Let cool, then cut nopales into 1-inch slices and cut corn kernels off the cob.
In a large bowl, combine nopales, corn, lime juice, cilantro, and a light drizzle of olive oil. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Just before serving, garnish with sliced avocado and queso fresco.
Serve as a salad or side dish, or use as a filling for tortillas.
• How to Clean and Prepare Nopales, from Rivenrock Gardens
(Images: Emily Ho)