In Mexico there is a plant, which is a symbol of the Mexican identity, called nopa. Which bears a delicious fruit: the tuna (if it is sweet) or «xoconostle» (if it is sour).
This exquisite fruit is consumed for a long time for its rich property and its unique flavor. With it, it is made jams, ice creams, as well as nectar and fruit in syrup. The husk has been used as fodder.
The origin of the word nopal derives from Nahuatl «nopalli», which in turn is derived from «nochtli» (tuna) and «palli» (flattened thing). While the term xoconostle is derived from the Nahuatl words «xococ» (sour) and «nochtli» (tuna), that is to say «tuna sour».
LEGEND OF THE NOPAL
Legend has it that Huitzilopochtli (God of war) abandoned his wife Malinalxochitl (to found his own kingdom.
She ruled the kingdom of Malinalco («place where there is malinalli») in the company of her son: Copil («crown»). Who grew up full of anger at the abandonment of Huitzilipochtli.
Years later, when Copil grew up he decided to punish Huitzilopochtli. So he took his shield and went in search of his father. Noticing the presence of Copil, Huitzilopochtli asked his men to remove his heart.
The warriors opened his chest with a knife, took out his beating heart and took it to his lord. Who contemplated him joyfully and ordered his henchmen to bury him among stones.
The order was fulfilled and the next day the Aztecs watched with astonishment that in the same place. Where the heart was buried, a beautiful shrub was born among the crags. The nopal, full of its own life and of resistance to the adversities of the environment.