Red and yellow and… orange

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Use papaw or papaya for a tropical burst of a juicy sweet, yet subtle flavour in your next meal

Use papaw or papaya for a tropical burst of a juicy sweet, yet subtle flavour in your next meal

Although they’re often mistaken for each other, papaw and papaya both look and taste quite different. Yellow papaw is the larger one and is not as sweet as its smaller, red-orange fleshed counterpart with its yellow-orange skin. But both are juicy in texture, and have a subtle, yet sweet flavour. Great news for recipes that would be overpowered by sickly sweet fruits.

These two tropical fruits are thankfully available all year round in Australia, and are both an great source of vitamin C and beta-carotene; which is good news for your skin and immune system.

“I love to marry the fruits with both light meats such as prawns, and rich meats like pork, and I also add it to my salsas for a fruity kick,” Alvin Quah, MasterChef Series Two contestant says. They’re also great in a chilled smoothie or lassi or dessert.

Two pointers to make things easier when selecting the fruit; make sure it only has black seeds (white seeds = won’t ripen) and it’s at least 50% yellow or orange (with limited green skin).


Red papaya lassi

Serves 2

Prep time: Less than 5 minutes


1 medium red papaya
½ cup natural yoghurt
250mls iced water
A dash of rosewater
¼ cup fresh mint leaves
1 teaspoon honey, if needed

Peel and deseed red papaya. Cut into chunks.
Place fruit and all other ingredients in a blender or food processor, blend until well combined and frothy.
Taste to determine if honey is required for extra sweetening. Add if needed and re-blend.
Pour into glasses and serve.


Prawn & yellow papaw tacos

Serves 4


24 medium Australian Prawns (approx. 650g)

½ tsp sea salt

For the salsa:

500g Yellow Papaw

¼ red onion, finely diced

½ cup fresh coriander leaves

2 tbsp lime juice

To Serve:

8 – 12 medium corn or flour tortillas


Peel, de-seed and dice papaw, combine with remaining salsa ingredients and stir to combine.

Peel and roughly chop prawns, season with salt. Heat a skillet to medium-high and cook prawns for two minutes until opaque. If required, add a splash of olive oil.

Layer tortillas with prawns and salsa just before serving.

Tip: Warm tortillas in a hot skillet, then wrap in a clean tea towel until needed.


Yellow papaw & prosciutto pizzas

Serves 2 – 4


2 large Lebanese flatbread wraps, or pre-baked pizza bases

2 tsp olive oil

1 garlic clove

250g Yellow Papaw

100g prosciutto, thinly shaved

120g fresh ricotta

2 handfuls rocket


Preheat oven to 200°C. Slice garlic clove in half and rub flatbreads with cut side. Brush breads with olive oil.

Crumble ricotta over bases. Peel, de-seed and thinly slice papaw, then layer over ricotta. Cut prosciutto slices into large ribbons and arrange over other ingredients.

Bake on a pan or pizza stone for six minutes, until prosciutto is sizzling and bases are just crisp. Top with rocket and drizzle with a bit of extra oil, slice into wedges and serve warm.

Tip: For an extra crispy base, bake pizza directly on oven rack.


Red papaya & mixed berry parfaits

Serves 4


400g Red Papaya

500g (2 cups) natural Greek or vanilla yoghurt

200g (2 cups) toasted muesli or granola

250g (2 cups) frozen mixed berries

1 tbsp water


In a saucepan over medium heat, simmer berries and water for four to five minutes, until just warm and syrupy. Mash slightly with a fork and set aside to cool while you peel, de-seed and dice papaya.

Spoon 2 tablespoons granola into the base of four glasses. Layer each glass with ¼ cup yoghurt, 2 tablespoons berry compote, ¼ cup diced papaya and 2 tablespoons granola.

Repeat layers and serve immediately.


Recipes and photos: www.australianpapaya.com.au


For web use: Share using #aussiepapayapapaw

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