Papaya in Syrup
(Dulce de Lechosa — Puerto Rico)
This is wonderful served atop slices of cream cheese or over vanilla or coconut
- 1/4 cup baking powder
- 2 pounds ripe papaya, peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cinnamon stick
- Cream cheese, vanilla ice cream or coconut ice cream (optional)
- Dissolve baking powder in 1 1/2 quarts water in a large non-reactive bowl. Add
papaya and soak it for 5 minutes.
- Drain the fruit and rinse it well under cold running
water. Cook the papaya with the sugar in a large pot, covered, over medium-high
heat, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes. Do not add water. The papaya will cook
in its own juice.
- Reduce the heat to very low, add the vanilla extract and cinnamon
stick, and simmer the papaya, uncovered, until the juice thickens into a thin syrup,
about 30 minutes.
- Remove the cinnamon stick and allow the papaya to cool.
- Serve it warm or chilled,
plain or as a garnish.
- Store any leftover papaya in syrup in a tightly closed container
in the refrigerator for up to five days.