Nopalitos – Desert Harvest Series – with Desert Harvesters’/Mano Y Metate’s Amy Valdes-Schwemm, May 11, 2017 — Tucson AZ

Thursday, May 11  
3-6 pm
(Saturday hands-on workshop on May 13)

with Desert Harvesters’/Mano Y Metate‘s Amy Valdes-Schwemm
Learn how easy it is to collect these nutritious cactus pads from your own yard or neighborhood, and how to prepare them in tasty recipes everyone will love.

Santa Cruz River Farmers’ Market
Mercado San Agustín
100 S. Avenido del Convento
Tucson, AZ 85745

All demos are free and open to the public!
Sponsored by the Community Food Bank of Southern Arizona

Unless otherwise indicated, these are demonstrations, not hands-on workshops. If you find a wild food that you particularly like, keep an eye out for possible upcoming hands-on workshops &/or volunteer harvesting opportunities with Desert Harvesters, Bean Tree Farm, and other collaborators!

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Eating from Bean Trees
with Desert Harvesters’/Bean Tree Farm‘s Barbara Rose
Thursday, June 1  
4-7 pm
Kick off the summer season with this demo featuring food from native bean trees, including palo verde, ironwood, and mesquite. Sample ironwood edamame, palo verde sprouts, mesquite atole drink, and 3-sisters snack mix!

Baking with Mesquite
with Desert Harvesters’/EXO Kitchen‘s Mikaela Jones
Thursday, June 8  
4-7 pm
Get baking tips about using naturally sweet mesquite flour in old and new recipes! Experienced local baker Mikaela offers skills and samples of her craft at this demo. Place-based baking at its best.

Mesquite Pod Best Harvest Practices
with Desert Harvesters’/The Mesquitery‘s Jeau Allen
ALSO Mesquite Guided Harvest Walks in Mercado Neighborhood
with Desert Harvesters
Thursday, June 15
4-7 pm

Get to know the mighty mesquite tree, and learn to identify, taste-test, safely harvest, and properly store mesquite pods and flour. Understand why it’s important to plant, grow, and harvest from native trees like velvet, screwbean, and honey mesquite.

Beautiful Beneficial Bean Trees
with Desert Harvesters’/Bean Tree Farm‘s Barbara Rose
Thursday, June 22  
4-7 pm
AND 15th Annual Mesquite Milling & Wild Foods Fiesta!
Celebrate the Sonoran Desert’s amazing native bean trees: mesquite, ironwood, and palo verde. Learn how to use nutritious seeds and pods in various ways. Native trees thrive on seasonal rains and provide myriad benefits beyond food value. Taste sprouts, flour, beverages, snacks.

Verdolagas & Summer Greens & Herbs
with Desert Harvesters’ Jill Lorenzini
Thursday, July 6  
4-7 pm
(Saturday hands-on workshop on July 8)

Learn to identify, harvest, and prepare delicious recipes using abundant summer greens like verdolagas, amaranth, tumbleweed. Sample salsa, fritters, slaw, pickle.

Prickly Pear Fruit
with Desert Harvesters’/Mano Y Metate‘s Amy Valdes-Schwemm
Thursday, August 17
4-7 pm
(Saturday hands-on workshop on August 19)

Prickly-pear fruit (in Spanish, tunas) have been cultivated and foraged for thousands of years. Learn best harvest and processing practices to make, store, and enjoy prickly pear juice. Sample beverages like prickly pear lemonade.

Beautiful Berries! NEW
with Desert Harvesters’/Bean Tree Farm‘s Barbara Rose
Thursday, September 14  
4-7 pm
Ample summer rains plump early-Autumn desert berries, signaling a subtle change of seasons. Wolfberries and hackberries brighten bushes with their juicy red and orange goodness. Sample berries in sauces, baked goods, salsas, and preserved in a variety of ways.

Mesquite Treats & Bake Sale NEW
with Desert Harvesters
Thursday, October 26  
3-6 pm 
(Saturday hands-on workshop on October 28)
Although mesquite pods are harvested in summer, they store well, whole or milled into flour, to be used year-round. Cooler weather means warming up the oven and kitchen with baking! Learn about using mesquite in your favorite recipes, sample sweet treats, and support Desert Harvesters Bake Sale!

Seasonal Salsas, Chutneys, & Sauces
with Desert Harvesters
Thursday, November 16  
3-6 pm 
(Saturday hands-on workshop on November 18)
Inspire your kitchen creativity using desert foods of this season like wolfberries and chiltepin, combined with stored foods from seasons past like mesquite flour and prickly pear juice. Sample warming recipes that connect you to place.

Barrel Cactus Fruit
with Desert Harvesters’ Jill Lorenzini
Thursday, December 7  
3-6pm (Saturday hands-on workshop on December 9)
Discover how easy and fun it is to harvest and use this colorful winter desert fruit! Sample fruit, seeds, pulp, both raw and cooked into sweet and savory treats.

For more information about the Desert Harvest Series demos:
Contact the Community Food Bank @ (520) 882-3313 or visit

For further information about Saturday follow-up hands-on workshops:
Please contact Barbara at or Jill at