Papaya comes in different shapes and sizes. It is a tropical fruit with orange flesh that is sweet, and it is often used in Asian dishes. It can be tricky to know if it is ripe before you cut it open. Take a look at the following tips for checking to see if your papaya is ripe.
Look at the Color
Just as other fruits that grow on vines and stalks, papaya is green when it is picked. At this stage, the papaya is still hard, and it is more resistant to bruising when it is shipped out to stores. You should buy papaya when it is partially green and partially yellow. When you bring it home, it will continue to ripen. You should keep it at room temperature until it is almost completely yellow.
Examine the Skin and the Ends of the Papaya
The skin of a ripened papaya should be smooth. It can be a little bit wrinkled without impacting the taste. If you notice sunken areas or bruises, it may be damaged inside. It does not ripen properly when this happens. You do not want a papaya that is soft and mushy.
In addition, take a look at the end where the papaya was attached to the stalk. You should see a yellow ring. If the ring is green, it isn’t ripe, and it won’t ripen because it was picked too early. You can press on the papaya with your fingers as well. If it is ripe, it will be soft and give when you press against it. If it is hard, it isn’t ripe yet.
Smell the Papaya
Smelling the papaya will also let you know whether it is ripe. Ripe papaya has a sweet scent, whereas unripe papaya will have no smell at all. If the odor is very strong and sweet, it is overripe. You are looking for the scent to be a faintly sweet odor that you have to lean in to smell.
It is important to know whether or not your papaya is ripe before you cut it open. Otherwise, it will be very disappointing when you taste it. When they are unripe, they do not have the sweet taste you are looking for, and when they are overripe, they are too sweet. It is pretty easy to tell when they are overripe because they will be mushy and give off a strong odor.