A while ago I discovered papaya seed oil in a health store. Although I didn't buy it instantly I went home and looked it up. Why should I use it and what for? Although it was 100% pure the bottle in the store stated it was for haircare only.
I wondered if it was edible and as I read on and discovered more and more health benefits I stumbled across something I have never heard before. Eating papaya seeds. I adore papayas and always made it a habit to scoop out the seeds and throw them in the compost. Not a single time was I questioning if I could eat them or not.
In fact papaya seeds seemed to be a lot more than just a fancy new addition to my spice collection. I discovered that they are used in traditional Chinese and Japanese medicine to detoxify and strengthen the liver. They are also a great way to rid the body of parasites.
It is fairly easy to turn papaya seeds into a pepper replacement. Simply slice a fresh papaya in half, scoop out the seeds and place them onto a kitchen towel. Fold the towel together and rub the seeds inside the cloth until they are clean.
If you have a dehydrator, set it on the lowest setting and dry them over night. If you don't have a dehydrator you can use a fan-assisted oven. Spread the seeds on a baking tray, lined with a baking parchment. Set it on lowest temperature setting and dry the seeds until they break apart when crushed.
Once dry you can fill them into a spice mill and use it like pepper. Dried papaya seeds taste a little bit like watercress and add a rich flavour to dressings.