Papaya fruit is native to Central America and has been long cherished by the Latin American Indians. Spanish and Portuguese explorers brought it to many other subtropical regions, including the Indian subcontinent. Christopher Columbus was so allured by it’s sun kissed, luscious taste and colour that he called it “fruit of the Angels”.

I’ve always been partial to foods with bitter undertones; dark chocolate, coffee, bitter gourd and papaya are few of my favourites in that respect. In case of papayas, it’s the buttery smooth and soft flesh of the fruit, the deliciously sweet and cool juice, combined with slight bitter and musky hint that makes them so uniquely interesting and flavourful. These very qualities make them a perfect ingredient to add to savoury and sour dishes to create balance of flavours.

My father always brought home papaya very frequently when it was in season and stressed upon it’s benefit as a great promoter of digestive health. Later on, when I read more about it, I found it to be quite a treasure chest full of antioxidant nutrients, vitamins, minerals and fibre. These nutrients are not only good for digestion but have anti-inflammatory effects, support immune system, protect eyesight degeneration and improve heart health.

Raw Papaya is included in many Soth Asian and South East Asian dishes and is also used as meat tenderiser for kebabs. I love to make this Ripe Papaya Salad as a refreshing addition to my warm days menu. This juicy, sweet and spicy Ripe Papaya salad is another delicious way to include papaya in your daily menu. It tastes amazing served as a side with meat mains, specially with fish. You can add toasted cottage cheese and almond to it too for a complete, light lunch on its own.


1/2 medium sized papaya, cut into cubes
1 red onion, chopped
1 cucumber, cut into cubes
/2 inch piece ginger, finely chopped
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons honey
1 teaspoon red chilli flakes
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
salt to taste
1/2 cup fresh coriander leaves

This Is What You Do:

Mix olive oil, ginger, lemon juice, honey, chilli flakes, black pepper, cinnamon, salt in a dessert bowl for dressing.

In a big salad bowl, add papaya, onions, cucumber.

Pour the dressing over them and toss everything to mix.

Refrigerate to chill.

Garnish with coriander leaves or your favourite greens before serving.


8 Replies to “Spicy Ripe Papaya Salad”

  1. I eat almost everyday in season but never had this ripe papaya salad. It looks yummy, Inshallah I will make tomorrow.
    Thank you Maria.

    1. Yes Helen, cinnamon is in the dressing as mentioned in the ingredients list. Missed it in the instructions. Sorry, my bad! Just fixed it. Thank you for pointing out.

  2. Definitely it was awesome and loved the salad alot. it was always a great pleasure trying out your recipe my dearest friend Maria πŸ’•. Iam sorry for not being in touch too often or post any tried and tested recipes as before.
    current health condition is not let me to be so.. I miss you all somuch. πŸ’“πŸ’“πŸ’“ hugs

    1. Glad you enjoyed the recipes, dearest Nillu! Don’t worry a bit about posting feedback, just take care of yourself! That’s the most important thing 😊

  3. I have got a papaya.wanted to make juice out it but plan changed,πŸ˜‰ I am going to make this today. Thank you dearest Maria πŸ’ž

    1. Thank you dearest Nillu! Hope you will be glad you changed your plan 😊 Keep adding papaya to your diet in different ways, it’s really good for so many reasons!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.