Monday, June 14, 2010

Operation Jackfruit


We got this bounty today. Some of it is not yet ripe and is hopefully, ripening in the heat of this summer's night.


How did it come about? K, who works with us, harvested this on his farm and brought us one, and cut it up for us. Cut it up doesn't describe it adequately enough. Neither does the word procedure. It is an operation, out and out.

The way he did it: Several sheets of newspaper, a small bowl of oil, sharp knives, one big, another small ...



... lots of strength and more patience. The round, white core at the centre is tough and need to be prised apart.


The oil helps mitigate the gummy stickiness that will adhere to your hands when you are cutting through the fruit. Notice the knife on the left, covered with it, all grey-white.


He cut it in half first ...


Then quartered it


... and cut it into eighths if it is a large fruit. Ours was not large.


Then, steadily, and with much concentration (throughout the operation), he cut off the sections of the central core.


Now the individual segments are easy to separate - they were earlier attached to the core. You can see it in the section on the right, where the core has been removed. It's almost like carving them out. He separated what looked like strips of jackfruit to get at the segments - it seemed to me that you need quite a bit of experience, else, you could cut through a segment and waste a lot of the bounty. K seemed to know exactly where one segment began and another ended. I guess I would have known too, had I also participated instead of taking photographs.


K also had this interesting technique where he scored the core's length and width.


He said doing so helped him minimise the damage to the segment's tops, and prevented some of the flesh from thus being wasted.


It makes for a more precise method, he said.


The exposed segments ...


... after the strips have been separated ...


... completely - a clearer picture


I read on the Internet that the strips are used to make jackfruit chips. They were tastier than the segments, which weren't as ripe.


Bon appetit!

Disclaimer: This is only a pictorial report, not intended as instruction. This post is the result of my being carried away with the golden opportunity I got, pun fully intended. I do not recommend any method, this or any other, as I
1. have not tried it myself
2. don't intend to
3. don't trust myself to do it well
4. believe one needs a fair amount of practice before I go recommending it to others.

Hence, I am not/do not hold me responsible for any blood that you may shed or any injury, whether to body, pride or other aspects, that you may suffer if you attempt this.

Having said that, I will proffer one serving suggestion: Stick a toothpick in each segment, put them on a nice platter and pass them around as appetizers. I was really wowed when I saw that done somewhere.

This is going to Jaya's Back to Basics event.

34 comments:

  1. slurrrrrrrrrrrp! my mouth is watering and longing for the jack fruit which is my favourite.

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  2. You could make JF dosas too, grind with bit of sugar (if JF is not too sweet) and maida, that's it or easiest to pop in a few as they are! :D
    I can cut a JF too!Fortunately, I get fabulously ripened JF in cans from Vietnamese store, love them.
    Enjoy the joys of Summer or is it Monsoon already!

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  3. Nice! I got down to business the first time we bought one of them here and it was not too hard if we remembered to oil our hands pretty well.

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  4. I ate a jackfruit a long time ago, as a kid, and do not remember the taste. But I do remember the adults discussing the stickiness and the oil and various efficient ways of cutting it. This is as clear as it can get.

    (In my last post I admitted to not eating tempered curd rice till I was 28 and got pointed questions and online stares. I hope not remembering the taste of jackfruit exempts me from it. )

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  5. I love ripe jackfruit but have never dealt with one ... as the pics show, does require good skills to do so. :-)

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  6. Where is my buchet to catch my drool. The more i scrolled down more drool. We had a tree at home and every year there was abundence of jackfruit and the sight of your friend cutting them makes me nostalgice that is a scen i have not seen in years as when eve rin go the seson is finished.

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  7. Just the mere mention of jack fruit makes me long for them.
    You said it, it is not just a procedure..
    This is exactly how it used to be when we had jackfruit at home as kids. we will be eagerly taking in the visual treat, awaiting the treat to tastebuds, rather impatient.

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  8. U just took me back to my native where it is a regular affair at every household during summer.... WOW!!! I love it so much... The very fragrance is enticing.... Makes me drool at all the yummy pics of the fruit.....

    Ash...
    (http://asha-oceanichope.blogspot.com/)

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  9. Absolutely fascinating! I've seen jackfruits in my pan-Asian market before, but had no idea what was inside. I loved the step-by-step deconstruction, but there is no way I have the guts to try this at home.

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  10. I love palapazham! I LOVE the stuff. I can't imagine how people can equate its smell (strong, but sweet) with that of durian (strong and disgustingly dead-meaty), just because the fruit look so alike!

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  11. It is not hard to cut a jackfruit. If you oil your hands well, you'll be fine. We can't get them here where I live How I wish I could find them. I just love them. I probably can eat half of the segments shown in picture all by myself and get sick for couple of days.

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  12. My Mom loves this fruit... When we go to Kerala for summer this is all done for us :) but back home in hyd we gotta buy n clean n do all that you wrote ;)

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  13. This was such a ritual in my house :) I miss eating jackfruit freshly 'cut' sitting next to our servant.

    I miss being warned about acute stomach ache!

    now. I. want. some.

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  14. As a child, I used to be fascinated watching the jackfruit vendor slice up the segments. It is such a fascinating 'operation'!

    All along, I had assumed that JF chips were made from slicing up the segments, now I know better. Love the chips, somehow, don't care so much for JF any longer.

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  15. This is the sole reason for which I avoid whole fruits. And save the seeds.. they make a great stir fry.

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  16. Sra, now you're making me long for jackfruit!Absolutely love it; have never cut one myself though.

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  17. Reminds me how we used to crowd around a great aunt and watch her slice thru and the only help we did were to munch the yummy fruit after she did all the heavy duty work!

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  18. I have never ever attempted this. My Mom used to say too much work. No one at home can stand the ripe jackfruit smell either. And I don't even know whether I like ripe jackfruit

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  19. I've never had jackfruits before but I keep seeing them around and really want to try them! I love your disclaimer at the end...made me laugh!

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  20. if i wasn't going home in a few days, i would have banned ur blog for posting food porn. i love jackfruit so much, don't mind my stomach getting upset from overeating.:)

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  21. Hi Sra
    Visting after a long gap...hey the operation jackfruit was interesting revelation..i know my mom makes jackfruit pickles... and we relish the ripe jackfruit as well..except sometimes the aroma may overwhelm one.

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  22. Very detailed, truly an operation of the jackfruit (pun intended). :D

    I personally (and I'm the only one on both sides of the family) dislike cutting, cleaning and eating jackfruit!
    I'm willing to make an exception for jackfruit chips and jam though.

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  23. Recently I bought Jackfruit from the local Indian store. I didn't know how to cut it and was starting at it for a while. Somehow managed to pull those precious fruit and we enjoyed it thoroughly. Wish I could have seen this before, it could have saved my time. Thanks for sharing it Sra.

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  24. not had jack fruits in ages and these pics bring back memories of my hometown ..and makes me hungry.

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  25. Oh yum.... This is pure torture... I miss jackfruit!

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  26. How cool! Very interesting post! Loved all the pictures!

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  27. Long time I came here Sra...really sorry...I have seen several such operations when we lived in Cuddalore where the panrutti famous for jackfruits are just few kms away...Still I have never dared to try it myself...These fruits looks a golden bounty..If not much ripe dip them in honey and travel to heaven ;)

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  28. Quite common from where i come from, you can make kickass cake out of this btw ( not the crisp ones, but the gooey jackfruits0

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  29. Ahh!! The jackfruit looks so satisfying! Enjoy it while its in season!

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  30. My Mum loves jackfruit especially this ripe kinds. Me and my sister almost cringe our nose at that. But each to her own, happy jackfruit eating.

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  31. hahah..thats a great pictorial Sra, you brought back many wonderful childhood memories I have spent doing exactly this..thanks for sharing..

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  32. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  33. Robert, sorry, your comment went into spam, and after I discovered it, I was fiddling with the settings and didn't realise I'd deleted it!

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