Cactus Pear is a kind of fruit that originated from a species of flat-stemmed spiny cacti. It is most commonly eaten as a fruit in the Mexican and American Mexican regions. Its taste is sweet, but some people find it not very delicious. It is not a kind of pear; it is just named “pear” just because it resembles the original pear’s shape and size.
Cactus Pear commonly knows as prickly pear. It has many health benefits and is thus used in making medicines. It is used for the cure of diabetes and obesity-related issue. It is also recommended for its anti-viral and anti-inflammatory properties.
How to Store Cactus Pear
To store Cactus Pear is very easy. This is used for many purposes, and thus, it has different methods of preserving according to its utilizing need. We are discussing few methods to store Cactus Pear here;
Cactus Pear is like a fruit. If you plan to store it for a couple of days and eat later, the best way to store it is in the refrigerator. It can retain its taste and freshness for almost 5 days depending upon its ripened state. If it is fully ripened, then seal it in a plastic bag and put it in the refrigerator, but storing more than 4 to 5 days will spoil the fully ripe fruit.
Keep at room temperature.
Sometimes the fruit is not completely ripe and has to put aside for a couple of days to reach its maximum ripen state. For that purpose, wrap Cactus Pear in any paper or newspaper and put it at room temperature for 2 – 3 days. It will ripen and get soft so that it can be eaten easily.
If you want to preserve it for an even longer period, the method you have to adapt is to freeze it. Please put it in a closed container, make sure the container is sealed properly then put it in the freezer. It may last up to 1 year while frozen.
You can blanch it before freezing. It is the method used to preserve the taste and shape of any fruit or vegetable.
It is one of the oldest methods to preserve anything. Drying the fruit maintains its taste for a very long time. There are many methods for dehydrating anything to store. Still, if you want Cactus Pear not to be tasteless, you have to marinate it first with any Flavorful marinade, for example, balsamic vinegar or soya.
Can You Freeze Cactus Pear
Definitely, you can freeze it. Frozen Cactus Pear can be used anytime in a year. The best method to freeze it is first to blanch it and then freeze it. Because simply freezing it could decrease its taste and after thawing its skin become wilt. On the other hand, blanching gives the advantage of preserving not only for a longer period but also retain its taste and shape. Frozen Cactus Pear with this method can last more than a year. But make sure that the fruit is in a sealed container or airtight bag.
How Long Does Cactus Pear Last
The shelf life of Cactus Pear is not very long. The Cactus Pear usually comes with a sell-by date written on it. It retains its peak quality until the date of expiry. It can be stored for 2 – 3 days provided in good conditions, such as shady, cool, dry, and low temperature.
On the other hand, if the fruit is a bit hard, it can last longer in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. If the Cactus Pear is in wine or syrup form, it can be kept in an airtight container, and it can last for several months. And lastly, if it is constantly kept in the freezer, they last for one year. But before freezing, make sure you are following the aforementioned instructions of freezing it.
How To Tell If Cactus Pear Is Bad
If fruit gets bad, there is a change in taste, shape, smell, and even color. Like other fruits, Cactus Pear also spoils very fast as it is not shelf-stable for a long period.
- Foul Smell: When the fruit is kept for many days, it starts changing its smell. It will start producing a pungent smell, which is the first sign to notice that fruit is bad.
- Decolorization: Cactus Pear is red in color from the inside, but over time, its color becomes to changes from red to light pink and finally yellow. Which is the sign that the fruit is spoiled.
- Mold Growth: Mold is a type of fungus that starts growing on spoiled or deteriorated fruit. This growth occurs if the fruit is kept outside of the refrigerator for a long time. Do not eat Cactus Pear if you see a whitish-grey color foam-like substance growing on it. The fruit is spoiled now.