My back yard has several papaya trees fruiting all at the same time. Rather than letting the monkeys getting away with the ripen fruits, I decided to try out this recipe that I stumbled upon in The Kuali. The texture is very crunchy, so unlike those bought outside which usually has a very strong vinegar taste. It's so delicious even the boys are eating it! It's supposed to be left to marinate for a couple of hours but it's almost gone now.
Here's the recipe for those who would like to try.
1 green unripe papaya
1 tbsp salt
5–6 bird’s eye chillies (chili padi)
250ml good quality vinegar
Skin the papaya then cut into halves. Remove the seeds. Cut the papaya into 1-inch thick slices then cut each piece into thin slices without cutting all the way through (this allows the pieces to be opened up into a fan-shape.) If preferred, cut the papaya into thin slices.
Put the pieces of papaya in a clean mixing bowl. Add the salt, mix and allow to marinate for about an hour until the papaya turn soft. Squeeze out excess liquid.
Put vinegar, water and sugar into a heavy-based saucepan and bring to a low simmering boil for 10–15 minutes. Remove saucepan from the heat and leave aside to cool completely.
Pack the papaya slices and cili padi in a glass jar and pour in the cooled vinegar syrup.
Allow to marinate for approximately 2–3 hours before serving. Store pickle in the refrigerator for an extra crunchy taste.