How To Pick and Peel Ficchi D'India

Updated: May 12, 2020

These beloved jewels may look pretty and sweet on the inside but on the outside they are dangerous! They have paper thin thorns that easily insert themselves into your skin if you touch them and are molto difficile to remove. Therefore picking them and peeling them require a special technique (see videos below)


My nonno has built himself a special tool he uses to pick them. Basically it is a long pole with a double cone shape at one end. Nonno cups the fruit and turns it to the side to break it off the "pala". Since the cactus plants grow tall and wide, sometimes the perfect fico d'india is a real challenge to get. (see video below, wait til the end, you will LOL)


Now the tricky part is peeling them without getting a million thorn in your hands! Nonno starts by soaking them in water for about 30 minutes. Then he cuts both ends, slices down the middle and the beautiful fruit comes right out! By the time he's done peeling them, half of them have been eaten haha