Garo Bunga Pepaya (Garo Papaya Flower) is a traditional vegetable dish from Manadonese or Minahasa descent people in North Sulawesi Province, Indonesia.
Besides eating plenty of fish and meats, the Manadonese also consume a healthy amount of vegetables.
A popular Manado’s vegetable dish is the Garo Bunga Pepaya.
Garo meaning mixed or stirred, while Papaya Flowers are actually flower buds from the Papaya male plant. Garo Bunga Papaya is typically a hot and spicy dish with a pleasant bitter after taste.
There are variant recipes of this dish, some will mix it together with papaya leaf, morning glory, or gnetum gnemon leaf (daun melinjo) to reduce its bitter taste. This is usually served with smoked skipjack tuna (Cakalang Fufu).
Garo Bunga Pepaya (Garo Papaya Flower) is derived from the word garo which means mixed or stirred and Bunga is for flower or blossom, while papaya is the Indonesian word for papaya or papaw.
Papaya flower had a bitter taste, that’s why this ethnic tropical edible flower requires proper treatment prior to cooking.
Several known methods are boiling the papaya blossom with salted water and/or kapur sirih or calcium hydroxide, besides, you can simply add Daun jambu or guava leaves while you boiling it.
These methods can be used to treat the papaya leaves for making tumis Bunga dan Daun papaya, but this treatment is not necessary if you want to cook the young papaya fruit.