A California desert-inspired cactus confit

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There’s nothing more beguiling than food that speaks of place. At Truss & Twine in Palm Springs, chef Michael Beckman gets hyper-local with dishes made from California desert ingredients, some of which can be found in our own backyards. Using paddles of prickly pear cacti, otherwise known as nopales, he prepares a confit to pair with Drake Farms goat cheese dusted in pink powder made from dehydrated bougainvillea petals.

Nopales can be foraged throughout the Southland, but Beckman suggests buying them from your local farmers market, Latino or specialty markets. The cultivated ones you find in-store have thinner skins, which makes for easier peeling. Plus, you’ll save yourself the risk and trouble of de-thorning the prickly paddles. Served with a blanco or a reposado tequila, this California desert-inspired cheese platter is a stunning conversation starter that is sure to impress your guests.

Chef Michael Beckman’s citrus-spiced cactus confit with Drake Farms goat cheese dusted in bougainvillea powder and honeycomb. (Photo by Audrey Ma)(The original image is no longer available, please contact KCRW if you need access to the original image.)