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Oct 9, 2008 05:58 PM

Tuna, the cactus fruit...

Bought one. Can I just peel and eat it?

Any other thoughts?

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  1. Cut the top off, cut the base off. Make a slit on the side running from the top to bottom then peel - best way to do it.

    Ya man Comer! or press it for an agua fresca

    1. Is it sweet at all?

      BTW, thanks for the quick response, I think I might bring it over to friend's house tonight to try.

      9 Replies
      1. re: scuzzo

        did you get the green or red tuna?

        The red is sweeter but I like the green better- reminds me of cucumber and melon. I was told by a woman from Ciudad Obregon to get the yellow ones as they are the ripest.

        1. re: kare_raisu

          Look for the green tuna with a vivid golden tone. Those are the best and most ripe.

          I have a bottle of alcohol in the freezer that's made from distilling this fruit and surprisingly it tastes very much like silver tequila to me.

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          1. re: Cheese Boy

            I picked up some large green tuna at a local farmer's market. The inside is white and the seeds are hard and plentiful. I thought I read somewhere that the seeds could be eaten. The seeds in my tuna will crack a filling. Will these seeds soften? If not, what do I do with the fruit?

            1. re: kturnbull

              The seeds won't soften, so please don't try to chew them. Just chew around them. Most folks here in Mexico simply swallow the seeds--they won't hurt you, unless you are prone to diverticulosis/itis. In fact, there's a saying about eating those seed: "las gallinas comen piedritas, los mexicanos comen tunas." Translated, it's: hens eat little rocks [for their digestion], Mexicans eat tunas."

              The tuna, whatever its color, has the crunchy-sweet texture of ripe watermelon flesh and is equally thirst-quenching. Just peel and eat, or blend with water and sugar and strain for a wonderful agua fresca.


              1. re: kturnbull

                I chew mine. Many people just swallow them whole. Unfortunately, the tuna seeds are hard, they remain hard, and they're plentiful. Many people don't like eating them for just this reason. I guess it just takes a little getting used to, that's all. The green tuna are my favorite.

          2. re: scuzzo

            When they are ripe they are nicely sweet and suitable for blended drinks. Be very careful peeling; those tiny clusters of eyelash sized prickers are not easy to separate away.
            I make a chilled salad with hearts of palm, nopalito strips, and prickly pear fruit slices, that has the colors of the Mexican flag in a nice layout, with lime juice and dried shrimp powder.

            1. re: Veggo

              That sounds greeeeeat! Do you use fresh hearts of palm? Also, did you pick this up somewhere in San Luis Potosi... or did you just make it up?

              1. re: Eat_Nopal

                EN, I use canned hearts of palm -Vigo brand, of course- difficult to find fresh. I first had the salad at a villa in La Paz. (Baja Sur has almost as many cacti as SLP). I probably annoy the heck out of private cooks in Mexico with my rubber-necking in the kitchen because they are all so good at their trade and it is a great learning opportunity.

                1. re: Veggo

                  Ah yes... I tought of SLP because that is one of the few places where you can get fresh hearts of palm, nopales & tunas for such a dish.

          3. This tuna was red. It was my first time. I peeled and ate raw. Despite the red outside, I expected the inside to be white, for some reason. I was pleased to find the bright magenta flesh throughout. I didn't expect the seeds, and didn't love them, but still ate them. I would love to have a way to remove the seeds and try freezing. I'll bet it might be like a sorbet? Anyone tried this?

            Overall I'm glad I tried this. I like trying new things, and in Southern CA, there's a wide array of new things to try.

            Thanks for the feedback!

            1 Reply
            1. re: scuzzo

              Hi all!
              I found this site by googling for more information on tuna fruit.
              I was delighted to try my first tunas today at age 57!
              A friend brought some to Indiana from Mexico.
              I thought they reminded me of Kiwi fruit, but I lke tunas better.
              I was interested in all the comments, particularly the saying about gallinas. ;-)
              Thanks for this site!

            2. I just bought some more red tuna and ran them through my juicer. Voila, no seeds! I juiced about 3 or 4 and had a very nice glass of juice. I added nothing to it, and thought it tasted spectacular. I didn't peel them, just quartered them to fit in the juicer chute.

              This juice seems like it would make a most awesome sorbet! The juice tasted sort of like melted raspberry sherbet.

              Give it a try.

              2 Replies
              1. re: scuzzo

                Has anyone found nutrient information on this fruit? Usually such an intensely colored fruit turns out to be a good source of some vitamin or another. Very pretty deep red flesh, not much flavor, but currently very low price (20 cents) in Chicago---worth getting to know.

                1. re: Querencia

                  Here you go...


                  Nutritional data for a 1 cup serving, which is a little over 5 oz I think. Not too big a carb hit, but the fiber content is decent.