Popular in Thailand and pretty much anywhere papayas are grown, green papaya salad is a flavorful way to get your digestive juices flowing before your meal. Green papayas are underripe papayas that are firmer, less sweet, and contain a larger enzyme content than the ripened fruit. This makes for excellent digestive properties, and promotes overall healthy cell metabolism. When selecting green papaya at the market, be sure to select one that is firm, without any blotches or soft spots. If there is some ripeness in the papaya, don’t fret. As long as there is enough firmness to grate the papaya, it will work in this tart, crunchy, and refreshing salad combo.
Yield: 3 cups salad
Prep time: 20 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes
Serving size: 1/2 cup
Number of servings: 6
3 cups seeded, peeled, and grated green papaya
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onion
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro
1/4 cup mung bean sprouts (optional)
1/4 cup raw peanuts (optional)
Oil-Free Papaya Salad Dressing
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
2 teaspoons wheat-free tamari or other soy sauce
1 to 2 teaspoons coconut nectar, agave nectar, or sweetener of choice (optional)
1/2 teaspoon seeded and diced hot chile pepper, or 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/8 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Pinch of ancho chile powder (optional)
1. Place the papaya, green onion, and cilantro in a bowl and gently mix well.
2. Prepare the dressing: Combine all the dressing ingredients in a small bowl and whisk well.
3. Transfer the dressing to the papaya mixture and gently toss well.
Top with 1/2 cup of roasted unsalted peanuts or chopped cashews.
Add 1 tablespoon of chiffonaded fresh mint.
Add 1 cup of chopped tomato and/or green beans, cut into 1-inch pieces.
Top with mung beans sprouts before serving.
Depending on sweetness of the papaya, add 1 tablespoon of pure maple syrup, Date Syrup (page x), or other sweetener to taste.
Add 1 1/2 tablespoons of sesame oil, flax oil, or hemp oil to the dressing.