Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Don't poo-poo the pawpaw!


The parental units just returned from a trip to the midwest where they spent some time with my mom's cousins in Columbia, Missouri. My dad, who never met any kind of food he didn't like, brought me back a pawpaw which are apparently in season out there right now. I'd heard of pawpaws - that song, "pickin' up pawpaws and put'em in your pocket" - but I'd never eaten one. Until tonight.

Pawpaws are potato-sized and -shaped, with thin green skins the texture of mango skin. Although related to the papaya, pawpaws are actually a fruit known as a "custard apple" like a cherimoya, with large flat seeds and a soft, pale, creamy, tangy vanilla-scented flesh. I sliced the little pawpaw in half and scooped it out with a spoon, and truly, the flesh has the consistency of custard (which is a little weird in a fruit). Quite tasty (the flavor is described as a "mix between pineapple, mango and banana") although I'm not sure how you could eat a pawpaw other than raw - it doesn't seem to lend itself to cooking, but I'm just hazarding a guess.

At any rate, if you get the opportunity to partake of a pawpaw, please do, as a nice plump pawpaw is perfectly palatable and pleasantly perfumed. (Photo by K. Pomper, Kentucky State Univ.)

4 comments:

  1. Mmmmmm ... I have one more pawpaw left in my stash.

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  2. periwinkle, part of a parental unitOctober 16, 2008 at 3:26 PM

    Kathy actually made blueberry pawpaw pancakes, first known instance of cooked pawpaw, and they were delicious (although you likely get the flavor better raw).

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  3. Wow, Cuzzin - that's a coast-to-coast pawpaw diaspora! Enjoy the last one.

    Periwinkle, could you tell that there was any pawpaw in those pancakes? Were they just wicked smooth? Now I want blueberry pawpaw pancakes.

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  4. just don't confuse them for a maw-maw...!

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