Have you ever tasted a pawpaw? If the answer is no, then you should make plans to head to the Ohio pawpaw festival next weekend.
Pawpaws are the largest native fruit in the United States and the official native fruit of Ohio. They are also an Ark of Taste fruit. They grow on trees in woodland areas in Ohio and 25 other states and have a pale green skin that turns yellow as they ripen. They are amazingly tropical for something that grows in Ohio and are like a cross between a custard apple, mango, guava and banana. The flesh is creamy yellow but have a lot of seeds and bruise easily so aren’t popular commercially.
The pawpaw festival offers all sorts of pawpaw treats and activities. Here’s my account of last year’s festival. I will be there on Sunday judging the pawpaw cook-off contest at 1.30pm. Here is the schedule of the rest of the weekend’s activities. You can also combine your visit to the festival with a visit to the Athens farmers’ market, an O’Betty’s hot dog or some of the other great restaurants there. There are some other Athens ideas here, here and here.