Prickly pears for breakfast

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Prickly pears are the fruit of a cactus.  I first tried a prickly pear a few years ago when I was on a trip to Santa Barbara for my uncle Jim’s wedding.  I enjoyed the pear, but then I spent the next hour pulling microscopic barbs out of my hands with tweezers. Beware of prickly pears as they are indeed prickly.

I was surprised to see these pears at my local Giant Supermarket yesterday in Mechanicsburg, PA.  They are not quite as fresh as the one I picked in Santa Barbara, but they were definitely the perfect ripeness for eating.

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Due to the dangerous cactus covering of these pears, it is wise to handle them while wearing gloves.

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To get to the fruit inside, you simply cut the fruit along one side and peel off the outer layer to reveal the beautiful seeded fruit inside.  The seeds are crunchy.  I find these pears reminiscent of a pomegranate, except much sweeter.

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Prickly pears have about 40 calories each.  A serving of six pears only contains 240 calories which are made up of 84% carbs, 10% fats (from the seeds), and 6% protein.  Six pears also provide 100% of your daily magnesium, 36% of your daily calcium, and 36% of your daily potassium.

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