Papaya’s have the reputation of being an acquired taste because every papaya is not delicious. Sure, they have the potential to be sweet and juicy and succulent but these flavors will not be experienced if the fruit is not given time to properly ripen. This can take a while but it’s worth the wait. They blend perfectly into all types of smoothies without altering the taste or consistency too dramatically.
(Author’s note: I have waited like 3 weeks for a Red papaya to go from green to orange. It’s worth the wait but if you have travel plans, it’s something to consider).
Choosing a papaya is easy; go with a heavy fruit that doesn’t have any ugly marks or blemishes. Color may vary. Price may also vary. As much as possible, PURCHASE BASED ON COST OF THE WHOLE FRUIT VS THE COST PER POUND.
Yes, the call caps was necessary because this is an important point. Papaya’s are heavy fruits and those pounds will add up. Buying from a store that charges the same price regardless of how heavy it is, that is the way to go! You can get really big papaya’s for less than $4!
This is also another good reason to not shop at Walmart. For some reason, papaya’s are horribly priced in Walmart. You could be paying $3.69 a pound at Walmart. Please don’t do it.
If you’ve never tasted a papaya, I suggest you get your hands on a sample before you invest in an entire fruit (it sucks to be stuck with a lot of something that you don’t enjoy the taste of).
Personal Sized Papayas
Just as the name implies, these are way smaller than regular papayas. You can usually get 1 or 2 servings out of them. The ripening process is exactly the same as with larger papayas.
How to Ripen a Papaya
Place it on your kitchen table and leave it there until it is 3 days from being over ripe.
You’ll know a papaya is perfectly ripe when the texture is buttery smooth. When it comes to smooth, the texture is second only to a hass avocado.
A Word About Papaya Seeds: They have a peppery taste and some people dry them and use as pepper. It’s time consuming but do-able, if you really want papaya seed pepper.