Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Green Papaya Salad with Shrimp: Beating the Heat with Mark Bittman

Can you believe it is already August?! Right in the heat of the summer here in the U.S. and time to Beat the Heat at I Heart Cooking Clubs. I think South Asian foods and flavors with their fresh, tangy, spicy tastes are a perfect way to cook in the hot summer weather. Finding some bags of already shredded green papaya at the farmers market last week, I knew I wanted to make a salad and Mark Bittman's Green Papaya Salad with Shrimp from "Kitchen Express" looked both simple and delicious.

With a bag of shrimp in my freezer, I pretty much had everything I needed to throw this together for an easy summer dinner. The shrimp is the only thing that needs to be cooked and it cooks quickly, so this is a good dish to make and enjoy when it is hot and humid. It's also cheaper, fresher and just as good as the green papaya salad at my local Thai restaurant.

Bittman says, "Green papaya is just unripe papaya, easy enough to find."

Green Papaya Salad with Shrimp
adapted from "Mark Bittman's Kitchen Express"

Cook a dozen or more medium shrimp in a little vegetable oil. Meanwhile, combine a tablespoon of brown sugar, juice of a lime, a garlic clove, a tablespoon of fish or soy sauce. one-half teaspoon chile flakes (more or less), and some peeled ginger in a blender or food processor and puree. Grate (the food processor is good for this) a peeled and seeded green papaya (not one the size of a football) and two carrots. Toss with shrimp, sliced fresh tomatoes, and dressing; season to taste; and toss with chopped peanuts.

Notes/Results: Tangy, light and very quick to make, this is a delicious salad that is full of great flavor. With the pre-shredded papaya, it took just minutes to put together, always a bonus. For some reason I missed the carrot in the recipe--what I get for not reading more carefully, which would have added some more color, but the multi-colored cherry tomatoes help make up for that. I also tossed in a handful of chopped mixed herbs--cilantro, mint and Thai basil, which added a nice, fresh herbal taste. I will make this one again for sure.

You can check out how the other IHCC participants Beat the Heat by going to the site here and following the links.

Just a couple more days to enter my giveaway for a $75.00 electronic gift certificate to spend on unique artisanal goods at the Novica website. Find the details here.

This is a lovable salad but just in case you were missing it, my semi-regular Tuesday feature the Things I Am Loving This Week post will back next week. ;-)


  1. You find shredded green papaya!!! I am so jealous!

  2. I love how you turned this salad into a complete meal by adding shrimp! And can you convince my local Farmer's Market to carry green papaya? Sure it's not locally grown, but a girl's gotta get her fix!

  3. Perfect! I wish I had a source of green papaya - som tam has always been a favourite of mine.

  4. I don't think I've ever seen green papaya before. I'm loving all the herbs you added. This looks like such a fresh and tropical recipe to beat the heat! I've been craving shrimp something fierce lately and I finally found some great wild-caught shrimp at the farmer's market this weekend. The pics of your shrimp are making me want to eat them right now;-)

    Great pick!

  5. I couldn't agree with you more. I love Asian flavors in the summer. This Bittman salad looks wonderful Deb

  6. I really love the elements of your salad.
    I've been a fan of green papaya for a while now and the addition of shrimp to it is near inspired. I hope you are having a great day. Blessings...Mary

  7. oh my..this is fantastic! I am surely making it! thanks for posting. Such a fantastic and fun post too :)

  8. I would never have known what to do with green papaya before! This dish looks fantastic.

  9. this is beautiful and healthy looking dish

  10. wow love green papaya this is a fab salad

  11. This salad looks so refreshing. I keep seeing alot about green papaya and am dying to try it. I'll have to watch for it here.

  12. I would love to find some green papaya! I have been seeing recipes for it everywhere. But this is the best one - love it with shrimp! Delicious!

  13. I have never had green papaya before, Deb! I have to say...I'd love to sit back and beat the heat with this and a cocktail...sounds pretty perfect. Delicious =)

  14. Gorgeous salad, Deb, and great idea adding the shrimp. I always find green papaya almost impossible to get here, but I often make som tam by substituting green mango instead which seems to work pretty well.

  15. This look delightful, so fresh and light. I can't wait to try it!

  16. I have never even heard of green papaya - what a wonderful summer salad, wishing I had a source for the papaya to try it out.

  17. Pam--I know--I feel lucky all of the fun and no work!

    Joanne--Love that Mark Bittman. I'll do my best w/ your farmers market! lol ;-)

    Foodycat--I would randomly stumble across them at the Asian markets but was excited to find them already shredded. ;-)

    Kim--I an envying those wild-caught shrimp. ;-) You can sometimes find green papaya at Asian stores (if you have any near you).

    Lee Ann--thanks!

    Mary--thank you--the shrimp added so much to an already delicious salad. ;-)


    Johnny--Thank you! I hope you like it!

    Joanna--this is such a quick and easy salad to make too--hope you try it. ;-)

    Torviewtoronto--thank you very much!


    Carla--hope you can find some--try an Asian store.

    Reeni--thanks! I hope you can find some--I am sure you'll do something creative with it. ;-)

    girlichef--Come on over--I'll make the salad and some cocktails. ;-)

    Sue--I bet the green mango would work really well in this! Great idea!

    Mary--thank you--hope you like it!

    Christy--If you have any Asian markets around try asking them if they can get some. Sometimes the stock it when in season.


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