Originally Posted by selkins
That cactus is prickly pear. If you find any ripe fruit on it (a deep purple color), give this a try: Pick off the fruit using some leather gloves, as it has lots of almost invisible needles on it. Use a lighter to give it a scorch all around to burn those off. Then either peel it or just halve it and eat the stuff inside. Very tasty - kind of like a kiwi in flavor, but a beautiful deep red/purple color. Another thing folks do is peel several of them, and then pour a bunch of tequila over them and leave it to sit overnight. Makes some beautiful margaritas.
The paddles aren't just good for cattle. If you stop in an authentic Mexican restaurant, look for nopales on the menu.
A little more trivia: Gruene is a rough spelling of the German word for green. That part of Texas, along with New Braunfels area, were settling spots for German immigrants, who poured into Texas in the mid to late 1800s.
Hehe, as you can probably tell, I'm enjoying your RR. As a native Texan who has lived away for 20+ years, it's great fun to follow along as someone "discovers" the state.
Very cool, I'm going to start watching to see if I see any with fruit on it and will watch for it on the menus! Thanks!