All Things Papaya

Freshly picked selection:

Papaya

Papaya2Papaya trees are one of the fastest growing trees, going from seed to 20 foot tree in about a year and half. The fruit can range in size from 1 to 20 pounds.

What to look for when purchasing:

Look for richly colored papayas that give slightly to palm pressure, like a peach. The more yellow it is on the outside the more ripe it is. Green, slightly under ripe  papayas will ripen at room temperature.

How to store:

Under-ripe papayas can be stored at room temperature or put in a brown bag to speed up ripening. Ripe papayas can be refrigerated as soon as possible.

Varieties:

The most common variety of papaya is the Solo which is grown in Hawaii and Florida, and typically weighs about 2 pounds. They are large and slightly pear-shaped.

How to prepare:

Ripe papaya is best eaten raw and sometimes used to make juice. Green papayas can be cooked as a vegetable.

Nutritional Benefit:

health-benefits-of-papaya

Recipes to try:

Papaya works really well in smoothies. We love the idea of combining it with turmeric for extra health benefit in this recipe.

Turmeric Papaya Smoothie

Did you know that the seeds of the papaya are actually edible? They have a slightly peppery taste so they work well in salad dressings. Kitchen Confidante has a recipe for just that.

Papaya Seed Vinaigrette

Another unqiue way to enjoy this fruit is actually when it’s under-ripe. Green papaya is often used for salads in Thailand. This salad by The Sea Salt would make a tasty side.

Thai Green Papaya Salad

For a twist on mousse, Farm On Plate uses papaya combined with chia and cashews for a vegan option.

Vegan Papaya Mousse

Our Chef Says:

“For added sweetness, I love to use papaya in a fresh salsa over grilled fish or chicken.”

-Megan Huard, Chef RD

References:

Herbst, Sharon Tyler. Food lover’s companion: comprehensive definitions of over 3000 food, wine, and culinary terms. 3rd ed. New York: Barron’s Educational Series, 1995. Print.

Mateljan, George. The Worlds Healthiest Foods. Seattle: George Mateljan Foundation, 2007. Print.

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