This might sound like the craziest thing I’ve made, but then, I baked this three times in 24 hours so that trumps the former, I’m sure!
The story is this: we were given a really large papaya (pawpaw, as it is known in Australia) and we didn’t quite know what to do with it, since Mom gets tummy aches when she eats papaya. And I have to say, papayas here really lack flavour as compared to the ones in Malaysia. Dad joked that I should make papaya bread and in all seriousness, I asked if he would eat it if I did. He answered yes, so I went about making it one morning.
First, I tried Googling it, but the results were a bit of a turn-off as soon as it said ‘cream the butter and sugar’. What can I say? I hate washing my food processor with all the grooves and plasticky bits making it difficult to ensure that it’s actually clean. It’s been said one too many a time, but I have to say it, so just let me, okay?
The worst part about baking and cooking is the cleaning. SO THERE!
Anyway, I refused to work with whatever Google produced and I made several modifications to my banana bread recipe. Well, it turned out spectacular – so spectacular that my mother thought I should bake another loaf since there was leftover papaya! I obliged and baked another, and asked if she wanted to take some to a family friend. Of course, I shouldn’t have opened my big fat mouth.
‘Why don’t you bake another? There’s still papaya left….’
And that’s how I ended up baking three loaves in 24 hours (I baked the third the next morning). Good thing it was an easy recipe, and I had already memorised it after the first loaf. This produces a moist, slightly sweet bread with sultanas and crunchy macadamias tossed within. You can also buy dried apricots and pineapples, chop them up and stir it into the batter. This bread is quite nice on its own, but of course, slathering butter on wouldn’t hurt. When does butter ever?
Tropical Papaya Bread with Macadamias
- 1 cup self-raising flour
- 1 cup wholemeal flour
- 1 cup mashed papaya
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1/4 cup sultanas & dried fruit (pineapple/apricot)
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 eggs, lightly whisked
- 50g unsalted butter, melted and cooled
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- a handful of macadamias, halved (slide a butter knife into the groove and it should split into halves)
- pinch of salt
- to sprinkle: 1 1/2 tbsp raw sugar
Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius. Toast the macadamias in the oven for about 8 to 10 minutes, shaking them halfway to ensure that it is evenly toasted.
Line a loaf tin, including the sides, with baking paper.
Mix all the ingredients except the flours, sultanas and macadamias in a large mixing bowl.
Add in the sultanas and macadamias and stir.
Fold in the flours until everything is incorporated.
Pour everything into the loaf tin and sprinkle the raw sugar on top.
Bake for about 45 to 50 minutes.
Let cool in tin for about 10 minutes before removing to cool on a rack.
Slice and serve warm on its own or with butter, cream cheese and/or honey.