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Cactus is a spiny plant known by different names such as Nagfani, Nagamalli and Chaptukalli in different parts of India. Cactus recipes are popular in Mexico- but Indians too use the plant and fruit of cactus in various cuisines.
Some of the edible varieties of cactus include prickly pear or nopal cactus, dragon fruit cactus and cholla. Prickly pear is the most widely consumed type, characterised by flat pads and eaten when the plant is young, after carefully removing its thorns.
Nopal cactus has antiviral, antioxidant, anti-cholesterol, anti-diabetic and anti-cancer properties. It is rich in nutrients like protein, calcium, fibre, iron, potassium, phosphorus, sodium, vitamin C, vitamin A, folate and choline. 
Most of the fruits of true cactus are safe to eat, however, in some cases, they may cause side effects like headaches, nausea and bloating.
Here is the recipe for Indian style cactus fry. Take a look.
How To Prepare Indian Style Cactus Fry
Recipe By: Boldsky
Recipe Type: Vegetarian
- Three cups of Nopal cactus, washed and sliced into thin pieces.
- Two tablespoons of ghee.
- A pinch of asafoetida.
- Half teaspoon of cumin seeds.
- One teaspoon of fennel seeds.
- 2-3 garlic cloves, chopped.
- Two dried red chillies.
- 1-2 green chillies (optional).
- Three tablespoons of dry mango powder.
- A medium-sized tomato, chopped.
- A small-sized onion, chopped.
- Half tablespoon of turmeric.
- A tablespoon of coriander powder.
- Heat ghee in a pan and crackle cumin seeds, fennel seeds, dried red chillies and asafoetida.
- Once done, add the chopped garlic and saute until light brown.
- Add the cactus and saute on a high flame for around 7-8 minutes.
- Add tomato, onion, coriander powder, turmeric, dry mango powder and salt to taste.
- Mix well and cook for 2-3 minutes on a low flame.
- Cover the lid and cook until the cactus gets soft and tinder.
- Serve hot. You can season the cactus with some black pepper.
- The dish will taste like a mixture of capsicum and ladyfingers. Enjoy the new taste with roti or paratha.
- People - 2
- Calories - 124
- Protein - 4 g
- Carbohydrates - 14 g
- Fiber - 6 g