How Papaya and Papaw can benefit your body.

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Papaya and papaw have an extraordinary number of nutritional benefits you may not know about.

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Masterchef contestant Alvin Quah.

Many people believe that papaya and papaw are the same fruit however Alvin Quah, Masterchef contestant confirms, “they are quite different in taste and physical appearance”. Quah explains, “red papaya is pear shaped with yellow-orange coloured skin and organe-red flesh. Not to be confused with yellow papaw which is larger, and has less of a sweet taste, with distinct yellow flesh and pale orange skin”.

Papaya and papaw flood your system with nutritional benefits, protecting your body from disease. Papayas are extremely high in antioxidants and minerals such as carotene and vitamin C as well as vitamin B, folate, potassium, cooper, magnesium and fibre.

These minerals and vitamins protect the body against cardiovascular disease, colon cancer, support immune health and function, promote digestive health and possess anti-inflammatory qualities which have been proven to aid in the healing process of burns and cuts.

Green papaya or papaya that is not yet fully ripe also contains papain, a digestive enzyme that allows for better digestion. People who have recently taken a course of antibiotics may take papain as the enzymes help restore balance in gut flora.

Yellow papaws are native to South America, also known as “the fruit of the angels” as they are a rich source of vitamins A, B and C, encouraging great eyesight and a strong immune system.

Papaw is great for cleansing for the stomach and intestines, which is why it’s used to treat stomachaches. To aid stomach healing, chop large-sized unripened papaw into pieces without removing the seeds and peel, and then infuse in 5 water bottles for 4 days.

After that, filter the water and drink half a glass three times each day for two weeks. This ancient remedy has been known to heal any type of stomach or intestinal ulcer.

Tips on selecting your perfect papaya and papaw:

When selecting your perfect papaya and papaw do not be put off by dark spots on the skin of the fruit – this does not mean the fruit is damaged or over ripe in any way. Ripe papaya and papaws will yield to pressure about the stem just like avocados.

For papayas and papaws that are ready to eat choose fruits that are slightly soft to touch and have skin that is completely yellow. Store ripe papaya and papaw in the fridge. If you plan to eat them in a few days, choose a fruit that is still rather green and allow it to ripen at room temperature a few days before opening.

Although papayas and papaws are commonly consumed as a breakfast meal or a snack, they can be incorporated into any meal of the day.

RECIPE: Yellow Papaw and Prosciutto Pizza (serves 2-4)

What you will need

2 large Lebanese flatbread wraps or pre-baked pizza bases

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 garlic clove

250g Yellow Papaw

100g prosciutto, thinly shaven

120g fresh ricotta

2 handfuls of rocket

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees celcius. Slice garlic clove in half and rub flatbreads with cut sides. Brush breads with olive oil.

2. Crumble ricotta over base. Peel, de-seed and thinly slice papaw, then lay on ricotta. Cut prosciutto slices into large ribbons and arrange over other ingredients.

3. Bake on a pan or pizza stone for 6 minutes, until prosciutto is sizzling and bases are just crisp.

4. Top with rocket and drizzle with a bit of extra oil. Slice into wedges and serve warm.

Recipe by: Papaya Australia

RECIPE: Red Papaya and Mixed Berry Parfaits (serves 4)

What you will need

400g red papaya

2 cups natural Greek or vanilla yoghurt

2 cups toasted muesli or granola

2 cups frozen mixed berries

1 tablespoon water

Directions

1. In a saucepan over medium heath, simmer berries and water for 4-5 minutes, until just warm and syrupy. Mash slightly with a fork and set aside to cool while you peel, de-seed and dice papaya.

2. Spoon 2 tablespoons of 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 of granola.

3. Repeat layers and serve immediately.

Recipe by: Papaya Australia

BB Intern Lauren Walker

How do you eat your Papaya or Pawpaw?

 

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Lauren Walker

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