Our Forgotten Fruit: Embrace the Paw Paw

George Washington loved them, and you can, too
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 3, 2009 4:23 PM CST
This March 12, 2009 file photo shows a pawpaw tree in Scarsdale, N.Y. Pawpaw has also been called the Hoosier banana, the Michigan banana, the whatever-state-it-grows-in banana.    (AP Photo/Lee Reich, FILE)

(Newser) – Pity the poor paw paw. It's got a long history in America—George Washington even called the fruit his favorite dessert—but it gets no love today. That's a shame, writes Ari Weinzweig. It's fallen out of favor because the trees are a pain to grow and the fruit doesn't ship well. "Like a lot of the old fruits, the amount of work required to grow 'em versus the yield in picked, ripe paw paws isn't all that great," Weinzweig writes at Atlantic.

But give them a chance. The fruit is nutritious, even if the taste is hard to pin down. "Got maybe a hint of lime, a little vanilla, a papaya, maybe a touch of the taste of ripe pear." And it can be turned into gelato, custard, cream, and paw paw pie. Besides, "how can you not be biased towards a Native American fruit called a paw paw?"