Pitaya 101

After reading yesterday's blog, my hubby gave me some interesting information about the pitaya to share with you. Pitayas are grown on a pitayo cactus, which is also knows as a pipe organ cactus. (see picture)

Pitayas are covered with many thin thorns, as pictured below. The campesinos remove most of the thorns during the ride back to town.

Pitayas sell at the market for 5 pesos each, which is about 40 american cents. Amazingly, people consider pitayas to be quite expensive. But since they are only available for a limited time, people splurge and buy 4 or 5 pitayas.

It is well-known amongst the local campesinos, that our entire family loves pitayas. So, instead of us having to go to the market to buy pitayas, the campesinos come to us. And since we purchase atleast 30 pitayas a day, we pay only 3 pesos per pitaya. (That's about 23 american cents!)
Pitayas can be made into sorbets, jams or aguas frescas. But the traditional way of eating pitayas, is to remove the outer skin and enjoy. This is the only fruit that I know of that isn't eaten with lemon and salt.

I better check to see if the kiddies left me any pitayas.

With Love,
Leslie Limon

(P.S.) Pitayas come in a variety of colors; orange and yellow, which are the most common, red, magenta and white. The white pitayas are very rare. Pitayas are considered an aphrodisiac and are believed to have healing qualities, especially for those who suffer from gastritis.


  1. In Asia, they are called Dragon Fruit. I am going to look for them here in some of our Hispanic grocery stores.

  2. Your husband reads your blog!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I just have to tell mine about what I write and read. lol
    Thanks for the info on the fruit, Im looking forward to getting some.

  3. Amanda, my hubby only reads my blog, when I tell him I've posted a new one. He'll then check it out, and point out anything I might have missed. I guess I should start giving him credit as my editor!

  4. We can buy tuna (cactus fruit)in the supermarket sometimes. I made agua fresca from them, but the seeds were a pain, worse than guayaba seeds. They have a dark one and a white one. I didn't notice any difference in taste. It's supposed to be really healthy.

    What is called pitaya here is Hylocereus undatus , it looks like a radioactive hot pink and lime green artichoke and has white pulp with tiny black seeds, I like it but it costs about 10 pesos each! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dragon_fruit
    I planted some and can't wait until I have my own fruits!
    My husband reads my blog sometimes he proofreads it for me, but usually he just reads it.

  5. Well, I am bummed out. I went to a couple hispanic grocers here in Phoenix and no luck on the Pitayas. Hopefully they will still be in season we I get to Nayarit in mid May.