Lots of foodies have tried papaya, however, not all of them enjoy that experience. The reason is that markets often serve either over-ripe or under-ripe fruits that have the scent of musk or lack flavors.
So, you may ask when ripened properly, what does papaya taste like? The trouble cropping up here is the subtle flavor of this “fruit of the angels” is very difficult to find if it is not picked fresh.
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What does papaya taste like?
For such unique taste, papaya is cultivated by Portuguese and Spanish explorers in every corner of the globe, from Latin America expanding to India, then to the Philippines and many areas of Africa.
To date, it is still a big question to exactly describe the taste of this staple fruit in Hawaii and Mexico. This tropical fruit has a distinct taste of dry sweetness, making it a unique and amazing fruit that goes beyond your expectations.
Different from most fruits, papayas offer soft texture and also dry sweetness with a musky undertone. A bad or bland taste is a sign for a papaya not ripened perfectly.
Otherwise, a perfect papaya will taste dry sweet and have a soft texture. You can also feel the slight muskiness in its taste. However, if your fruit is over-ripe, the muskiness taste will become too much.
The nutritional benefits of papaya
A papaya is wonderful not only for its good taste and easy-to-make snack, but for its high nutrition as well. Papayas contain lots of minerals and vitamins vital for the human body. The nutritional benefits a papaya brings you include:
- Have a variety of nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin A, and vitamin B.
- The fruit skin an antioxidant that helps slow the aging process.
- Contains enzymes that deal with digestive problems.
- Helps cleanse toxins out of the body.
- Ideal for protecting your body from a cold virus.
Picking a Ripe Papaya
To get the wonderful experience of this fruit, you should find one that is properly ripened. Unluckily, there is more to it that meets the eyes. The color is a deciding factor here, you need to look for those that look yellow and plump, and few blemishes too.
However, color, ranging somewhere between yellow and orange-red, is just the first step in your hunt for a perfect papaya. The second step that is equally important is the smell. Over-ripe papaya has a very distinct muskiness that is somehow like the smell of feet.
Seek for a gently sweet aroma that is near the stem end. Try not to pick those that have no odors because they can be under-ripe.
The last hint is: most hard fruits are under-ripe papayas. Meanwhile, flavorful papayas are generally as soft as a ripe avocado without any mushy spots. Mold on the fruit’s base or soft flesh near its stem end both bode badly for the desired papaya. In that case, they may be too over-ripe and of course won’t taste good.
How to make papaya taste better?
As I have told you before, papaya only tastes best when it is perfectly ripened. Beyond that, lots of people add honey to it for breakfast. For some others, they prefer to cut up the fruit then mix it with their favorite smoothies.
Papaya can also be used with other fruits such as bananas, pears, apples, blueberries, strawberries and even raspberries as well.
Another way to make papaya taste better is to use it with oatmeal. Whichever way you choose, papaya is an ideal option for your breakfast.
Not only serving as breakfast, a papaya that is dried is also a favorite food of many people. A dried papaya is a healthy snack and helps keep this fruit last longer too. Dried papaya is rich in nutrients, easy to take with you on hiking trips and other activities outdoors.
Keep your papaya fresh
After picking out a good papaya, you’d prefer to keep this fruit fresh for many days afterward so you can enjoy its flavor. You’ll certainly love it when knowing that these wonderful fruits are still good for a week if stored in a cool fridge. Yet, they only give you their best taste if you eat them within the first few days.
If your papaya is under-ripe for some unknown reasons, you should sit it out at the room temperature for several days. One thing to note here is, you should also place your unripe papaya on some flat surface while letting it sit out. By this way, mushy spots are prevented from appearing on the outside of the papaya.
You can put a pear or an apple in between those papayas to make their ripening process happen faster. Also, remember to spare some little space between those fruits placed on a flat surface.
Tasting the Tropics
Thanks to its complex and mild flavor, papaya has extreme versatility. You can puree this fruit to flavor savory and sweet soups, desserts and also sauces. As papayas contain the enzyme called papain, they can break down proteins and are perfect for marinating meats.
It is well known that in Thai and Vietnamese cuisine, under-ripe papaya is used as an important ingredient, particularly in green papaya salad. In these countries, a common way of using papaya is to pickle it then add to soups, or to prepare it as a salad with lime and chili.
The key here is to bring out the mild flavor of this fruit in sweet and crisp dishes where people prepare it like carrots or daikon.
Simultaneously, papaya not only has a unique taste but also bring you unbelievable health benefits when added to your diets.
To be more specific, this tropical fruit is a rich source of fiber, folic acid, beta-carotene, potassium, vitamin A, C, and antioxidants. When your body digests papaya, it helps enhance your digestive health, reduce inflammation, protect your eye health and also boost the immune system.
Adding Papaya to Your Diet
Believe me, you should add some to your daily diet, either as a dried papaya ready to take on the go or a papaya puree marinade to flavor a dish rich in protein. Whatever ways you choose, papaya is a thing full of wonders to add to your daily diet!
See also: Best Canned Refried Beans On The Market Today.
What does papaya taste like? If you’ve never tried the fruit papaya, you really should. It can be a daunting task to get a perfect papaya, however, such hard work of selecting and preparing it is indeed a worthwhile effort. With its unique complex flavor, papaya is a stunning and healthy addition to various dishes.