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Crème de Papaia—Fogo de Chão May 18, 2008 By Elmir Bernardon

Executive Chef at Fogo de Chão In a dining establishment that's known for its welcoming service, Brazilian cocktails, award-winning wine list, extensive salad spread and unbelievable variety of meats, one of the insider's secrets of regular diners is surely the crème de papaia (or papaya cream). The crème de papaia is the prize of our dessert selections. We serve this exotic dessert in a goblet suitable for any king or queen. The perfect crème de papaia has three ingredients. The most challenging but also the most rewarding is the papaya fruit from Brazil. The reasons to love this fruit are plenty. Foremost, the smell of a sweet ripened papaya reminds me of Brazil. Papayas are also known for their nutritional qualities. Natural-producing enzymes that assist in the breaking down of meat ?bers make the papaya a wonderful addition to a meal at Fogo de Chão. HOW TO PICK THE PERFECT PAPAYA Size does matter; look for a small to midsize fruit for a sweeter flavor. The skin of the fruit tells the story of the inside. You are searching for a hue of orange-yellow, with little to no traces of green. You can always ripen it in your kitchen, but the best flavors come from those that have been tree-ripened. The papayas we ship are packed individually from Brazil. This is a must to avoid bruising or puncturing the delicate fruit. A final ripening test requires using your finger and applying a light amount of pressure. If the fruit is soft to the touch, and you can see the fingerprint you left in the skin, then you have a winner. The inside of the fruit should be a deep red orange. To prepare the crème de papaia dessert, remove the skin and seeds from the fruit. Slice the papaya in half and then into cubes. Place two scoops of a premium vanilla bean ice cream and half of the fruit into a blender, and pulse for 30 seconds or until the fruit blends with the ice cream. Top this dessert with crème de cassis, black currant liquor. This provides a great balance and really completes the dessert.Variations of this can be done with strawberries, mango or even avocados.


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