Cactus Pear Syrup

There was a mexican restaurant in Cincinnati called Cactus Pear that had Margharita Mondays- and the best one was the cactus pear one- plus it was always a really festive bright hot pink. I was always curious how realistic that coloring was and if it was enhanced in any way.

And then! (exciting I know) I was at Whole Foods the other day and saw cactus pears! So I bought some for fun and decided to make a drink syrup out of them.

(also called prickly pear or tuna fruit)

I was really excited to slice into them,

How to cut a cactus pear:
Peel off the outside, luckily they sold them already post needles on the skin, then cut it in half, the core is the part you actually use/eat, so pull off the other thicker outside of the fruit

then cut up the fruit into cubes

Cactus Pear Syrup:

3 cactus pears; peeled and chopped
2/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup water
1 lemon

1   in a saucepan heat the cactus pear, sugar, and water until boiling
2   then let it simmer for 8-12 minutes
3   remove from heat and squeeze in the lemon, this helps preserve it
4   run the syrup through a fine mesh sieve- they have TONS of tiny seeds
     in them you'll want to get out
5   put in a bottle and keep in the fridge to enjoy

We put it in pineapple juice and it was mouth-wateringly good!
& I'm happy to report it is naturally that amazing hot pink color!

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