The first time I had fresh papaya was in Thailand. I was 8 years old and my mom got to attend a conference in Bangkok so she brought me along for the ride. Our first morning there, I was starving – thanks to a combination of jetlag and skipping dinner the night before – and raced down to the hotel restaurant, hoping to see a buffet lineup with waffles and eggs and bacon. What I got were plates of fruit – pineapple, papaya, and honeydew – and toast and jam. I was disappointed, to say the least, and was fully expecting to walk away hungry, but something about that fresh fruit turned out to be exactly what I needed. I’m sure we ate other amazing things during our stay, but the only thing I can remember is the fruit.
Ever since that trip, I’ve always associated papaya with Thailand – exotic and refreshing. It makes me feel a little fancier, even if it’s just going inside a muffin.
After the week of terrible eating that came with Hurricane/Frankenstorm Sandy (I ate Halloween candy for dinner on more than one occasion), some healthy muffins are in order. And these are just what the doctor ordered. Sweet potatoes are nutrient-rich as it is, but baked into a muffin, they’re a great way to start your day off right. And if you eat these for breakfast, you might even be able to get away with eating chocolate for dinner. No you won’t, but you might fool yourself into thinking so.