Paw-paw is a fruit native to North America, it is solely cultivated there, and it has greenish-yellow skin and turns yellowish-brown after ripe. It has a rich, creamy white-colored texture from inside and has a mixed taste, which resembles Mango, Banana, or Papaya.
Paw-paw is a vitamin C-rich fruit that goes perfectly with desserts. Also, its creamy texture plays a great role in smoothies and puddings.
Paw-paw has a short shelf life, and it can be easily spoiled if not stored properly; ripe paw-paw should be used within three days after buying, while unripe paw-paw can be used for a little longer after refrigerated.
How to Store Paw-Paw
Paw-paw is a vulnerable fruit and can be spoiled very quickly, so it will be a bit tricky to store it, but it is not impossible, so you should not worry about it and try to take care of all the precautions while storing it.
For instance, keep your paw-paw fruit in a dry and cool place; never keep them close to each other as it can increase the chances of spoilage; there should be gaps between them. After storing it properly, its flavor and freshness can be retained.
Some methods can help preserve paw-paw fruit which is listed below,
Storing Ripe Paw-Paw
If you bought ripe paw-paws, they would be good for 2-3 days at room temperature, always keep them at a cool, dry, and dark place like at your kitchen counter or rack, but if you cannot use all of them within the time limit, you can put them into zip lock bag and then refrigerate it, this way you can use them for up to a week.
Storing Unripe Paw-Paw
Unripe paw-paw can remain stable in the refrigerator for two weeks, and when you want to eat them, take them out of the refrigerator and wait for few more days until they fully ripen and then use them.
Keep It Into Refrigerator
After refrigeration, paw-paw can be used for an extended period, but storing them in the fridge as a whole is risky because it is not guaranteed that its flavor and taste will remain the same. Still, there is a way which is more suitable for preserving it appropriately, and that way is to make a puree of paw-paw; to do that, first, wash it well, cut it into two halves, remove the seeds with the help of a spoon and then scoop out its pulp.
This pulp or puree can be kept into an airtight jar or zip-lock plastic bag, and then you can refrigerate it; this way, you will experience the same flavor and taste as fresh.
Can You Freeze Paw-Paw
You can freeze paw-paw pulp or puree, and it can remain useable for up to a year into your smoothies and desserts; you can do this by cutting it into two halves and scooping out the pulp.
Now there are two choices; one can freeze it as it is without grinding it or grind it in a food processor then freeze it. If you want to use it in smoothies or desserts, it is advised that freeze it in the form of smooth puree. But if you will use it in baked items, then you can freeze it as pulp.
How Long Does Paw-Paw Last
Paw-paw has a short life span; fresh, fully ripe paw-paw lasts 2-3 days at room temperature if stored properly, and it can remain stable for a week in the refrigerator.
If you bought unripe paw-paw, they can be kept in the fridge for 2-3 weeks and remains good; when you want to use them, take them out of the refrigerator and let them ripe at room temperature for few more days. At room temperature, an unripe paw-paw can last not more than a week.
You can refrigerate it to increase its life span, but it is better to buy it in small quantities because fresh ones give exceptional taste and flavor, which will be reduced after storing them.
How to Tell If Paw-Paw is Bad
Fresh paw-paw has a sweet taste and yellowish-brown color and a firmed texture that gives a sweet aroma, but if paw-paw has gone bad, following changes occur in them,
- Bruised Skin: Always check the skin of the paw-paw before buying it, and if you notice black spots or bruises all over its skin, it is started to spoil and cannot be used for eating.
- Mushy Texture: Paw-paw has smooth skin and firm texture, which you can feel by holding it into your hands; on the other hand, spoiled paw-paw will have an uneven soft texture.
- Bad Odor: Fresh paw-paw has a pleasantly sweet fragrance, but if you smell it and it has a bad odor, it indicates spoilage, and you should discard it.