Papaya is sold all year round, especially in the south, and is not very expensive. It has a sweet smell and offers various minerals and vitamins, such as vitamin A and C.
Vietnamese “đu đủ” is a big, cylinder-shaped fruit and has a green color when not ripen. The fruit can be eaten fresh when it becomes as soft as an avocado. The skin by then turns to a variety of orange, covering the inside reddish flesh and numerous small black seeds.
In the south, one of the popular varieties of papaya is the one with red, thick pulp that has a fragrance but that does not contain much sugar. This species is grown in the Mekong Delta Region and in the area close to the Cambodian border. Another species of papaya available in the south is the one with yellow or orange peel.
Papayas are not as abundant in the north. Because of the colder climate, fruits take a longer time to ripen.
Ripe papaya is often eaten raw after peeling off the coat and removing all the black seeds. You should not eat the papaya seeds due to their countable amount of poison, which will disturb your pulse and nerve system.
Adding papaya, sugar, milk, and other fruits like banana, avocado, pineapple into the blender, you can also make a nice smoothie drink.
Papaya plays a vital role in Southern Vietnam’s life. With the pronunciation close to the word sufficient, this fruit is displayed in Tet holiday, hoping for a better and happy upcoming year.
The unripe green fruit is often eaten cooked due to its latex content. It is commonly eaten raw in Vietnam and Thailand. The ripe fruit of the papaya is usually eaten raw, without skin or seeds. The black seeds of the papaya are edible and have a sharp, spicy taste.
The raw fruit can be ripened by placing in the sun. The young leaves, flowers and stems can be prepared by boiling with changes of water.
The papaya is a small, sparsely branched tree, usually with a single stem growing from 5 to 10 m (16 to 33 ft) tall, with spirally arranged leaves confined to the top of the trunk. The lower trunk is conspicuously scarred where leaves and fruit were borne. The leaves are large, 50–70 cm (20–28 in) in diameter, deeply palmately lobed, with seven lobes. All parts of the plant contain latex in articulated laticifers.