Papaya has orange to red flesh and is narrower than pawpaw (papaw). Pawpaw flesh is yellow and they are generally larger than papaya. Both are ready to eat when the skin is yellow and slightly soft to touch. Green papaya (pawpaw) is the unripened fruit.
Ripen papaya and pawpaw at room temperature, but once the fruit is cut it needs to be covered in plastic wrap and stored in the fridge. Handle carefully, as they bruise easily.
Start at the base of the fruit and cut in half. Remove the seeds, place the fruit skin side down and slice into strips. Carefully run a knife under strips to remove the skin.
Prepping tips for green papaya
You must peel green papaya before using it. Use a vegetable peeler and then cut off the stem. If you have a medium or large green papaya (more than 1kilo), cut the stem off first, stand the green papaya on its cut end and go at it with the vegetable peeler. Halve the papaya lengthwise and use a spoon to scoop out and discard the seeds. The white seeds eventually turn black during the ripening process.
Cut each half lengthwise into quarters, and then use a knife (or grapefruit knife or melon baller) to remove the thin white layer lining the cavity. Then cut it further to whatever shape or size you need.