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Desert’s bounty – cactus fruit – makes tasty souvenirs

Posted on April 1, 2013

Westward Look Wyndham Grand Resort & Spa gives you a great taste of the Southwest – literally! – whether you’re staying at Tucson’s first and finest resort or shopping online. One of our popular offerings at The Shop at Westward Look is made right here in Tucson: Cheri’s Desert Harvest cactus preserves, syrups, candies, quick mixes and gift items. If you’re looking for a unique souvenir that shouts “Tucson!,” the cactus products make great vacation mementos, presents for friends back home or hostess gifts (but don’t forget to get some for yourself).

Former elementary school teacher and native Tucsonan (yes, they do exist!) Cheri Romanoski created the cactus products using all-natural, healthy preserves. She put her knowledge of the flora and fauna of the Sonoran Desert and how Native Americans survived on its bounty and turned it into a blossoming national and international business. Her cactus syrups are even used by the likes of celebrity chef Bobby Flay for his specialty margaritas!

“We take extra care from the harvesting to the preparation and canning of the fruit or vegetable to not only protect the flavor, color and nutrition,” Cheri says, “but in many instances, to enhance those qualities.”

If you’re amazed at the stuff you can make out of cactus juice, get a load of this: Whatever is left over after the cactus juice is extracted doesn’t go to waste! It’s processed to extract the oil from seeds for cosmetic companies and the leftovers from that are made into zoo biscuits for hooved animals to give them much-needed vitamins and minerals! Who said the desert can’t be “green”?

Cheri’s Desert Harvest products can be ordered online through The Shop at Westward Look. Cheri has recipes and more at the Cheri’s Desert Harvest website.