what do you do with a paw paw?

This, my friends, is a paw paw. It is a fruit and is, in fact, the largest native fruit to North Carolina. We received bags of these babies from our CSA at Minka farm and I had no idea what to do with them. 

I let them ripen on the counter for a few days then ate one to see what the pure paw paw fruit is like. It has a custard-like flesh with a half melon/half citrus taste. After a bit of research and some examination, I figured the thick texture would be great for baking. 

I pureed my paw paws (about eight total) and strained a little juice to keep on the side. 

Then I made a cake! 

My recipe is adapted from Paula Dean's Hummingbird Cake recipe. 

 Paw Paw Cake
3 cups self-rising flour
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup vegetable oil
3 cups mashed paw paw
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp cinnamon
4 large eggs

1. Preheat oven to 325.
2 Grease and flour three round cake pans.
3. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and stir until batter is smooth. (easiest cake ever!)
4. Bake for 28 minutes until the tops are golden brown and a toothpick comes out clean.
5. Let cool in pan for 10 minutes then flip onto rack and let cool completely.

Paw Paw Icing
4 tbsp butter
1 box powdered sugar
2 tbsp paw paw juice
milk for thinning (if needed)

1. Beat butter and sugar, thin with paw paw juice and milk until a proper consistency is reached.
2. Beat some more and refrigerate while the cake cools.

The cake was very moist and sweet with an almost floral flavor. The cinnamon really complemented the paw paw.
Have you ever had a paw paw?

Linking up with Molly for FundayMonday and Jennie for Meal Plan Monday


  1. Looks good!
    Come link up your recipe with me today!