Explore New Territory

Posted By Xin-min Lai on Mar 17, 2016 in diet and nutrition

One thing I’ve learned about trying to lose or maintain my weight – you have to keep things fresh.  Whether it’s changing up your workouts or trying a new recipe (or learning how to cook!), updating your healthy lifestyle keeps you committed, and keeps things exciting.

My latest adventure was actually shopping at the mercado near me.  Since I moved to Long Beach last year, I drove past Northgate Market at least once a week.  I didn’t actually go in, until today – when I discovered three things that made me happier than a grocery store should:

  1. They have grass fed beef, at cheaper prices than the other grocery stores in the area.
  2. They have a giant salsa counter with so many varieties of salsa, I could live there happily.
  3. They sell cactus (nopales) – which I’d only tried once before as part of a juice blend.

So, rather than write off nopales because I’d never cooked it before, I did what any “adventurous” geek would do – I googled it.  And voila!  My first attempt at a recipe with nopales:

Shrimp – nopales – avocado wrap.

I have my low carb tortillas, my avocado, my shrimp from an earlier grocery trip, and my trusty sautee pan.  Plus olive oil, red onions, and garlic.

  1. I pan fried the garlic, onion, and nopales until they lost their slimy texture (ok, I was a little impatient – I was supposed to do it for about 15 minutes, but I skimped a bit on time).
  2. Then I pan fried the shrimp in the mix.
  3. Grab a tortilla, my brand new salsa (OMG heaven), avocado, and the newly cooked shrimp-nopales-onion mix.


A little messy, cuz I’m hardly a pro at wrapping tortillas around stuff, and certainly not a pro at cooking cactus paddles.  However, it’s awesome, and I have enough left over to bring to the summit I’m attending tomorrow.  Time to buy more tortillas, though.

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