What pear-shaped fruit resembles a melon on the inside but is botanically a berry? Juicy, sweet papaya! Called "fruit of the angels" by Christopher Columbus, this tropical gem has thin, green-gold skin and yellow to pinkish flesh that is similar to melon in texture and flavor. In the center of the flesh is a large cavity filled with small, black edible seeds that have a peppery taste.
Almost all papayas sold in the U.S. are grown in Hawaii and Florida. Early summer is their peak season, so take a few home to enjoy in salads, smoothies and desserts.
- Toss papaya slices into green salads for a burst of color and tropical flavor.
- Stuff the hollowed-out centers of papaya halves with a creamy chicken or tuna salad for a quick and easy summer entrée.
- Add papaya chunks to summer smoothies and shakes.
- Stir sweet, juicy papaya chunks into yogurt or cottage cheese.
- Top pancakes, waffles or French toast with papaya slices for a special touch at the breakfast table.
- Garnish glasses of sparkling water, iced tea and fruit punch with papaya chunks for a tropical touch.
- Grill papaya chunks on kabobs along with shrimp or scallops and serve over cooked rice for a sizzling summer entrée.
- Purée papaya chunks in a food processor or blender, then drizzle over angel food cake slices or scoops of vanilla ice cream for an easy, luscious dessert.
Grilled Pork & Papaya Tacos
Papaya Avocado Salad
Grilled Swordfish with Papaya Salsa
Panamanian Papaya Pie
Papaya Fruit Drink
BBQ Pork Chops with Papaya Salsa