Jackfruit is such a versatile vegetable. This fibrous, starchy, fleshy fruit is also referred to as ‘vegetarian meat’. Jackfruit/kathal or Panasa is cooked in a variety of ways. Kathal is one of the many things especially cooked on Holi in Eastern UP household as a replacement to the non veg but today I am sharing the Oriya style curry made with tender, raw jackfruit today. The UP style I will share some other time. 🙂
I also make the Punjabi style vegetable and jackfruit kebabs. There was a time I even pickled it but not anymore. I absolutely love the ripe jackfruit. Many people do not like its heady intoxicating fragrance but it is one of the things I continue to eat with relish since childhood. Kathal biryani is another favorite and it can beat any mutton biryani if made properly. One can also make jackfruit chips and stew which taste awesome.
Jackfruit is not just an exotic tropical vegetable/fruit but full of good nutrients too. It has ample dietary fibers, anti-oxidants, Vitamin A, Vitamin B6, Niacin, Riboflavin, Folic acid, Vitamin C and much more. It is also a good source of potassium, manganese, magnesium and iron.
I had an Oriya neighbor who was an excellent cook. I learned this recipe from her. She told me that there was a slight variation she did from the authentic one. The curry was rich, flavorful and excellent in texture. I made it after many a moons but the verdict of the family was great so here it is for all of you.
Raw tender jackfruit – 1 small or 1/2 kg peeled and chopped
Potato – 1 large
Onion – 2 + 2 green chilies (1 onion sliced & 1 finely grated or made into paste wit hthe green chili and cumin seeds)
Fresh Ginger and Garlic Paste – 1 tbsp each
Tomato – 1 ( grated or finely chopped)
Panchporan – 1/4 tsp
Cumin seed powder – 1/4 tsp
Turmeric powder – 1 tsp
Chili powder – to taste
Homemade garam masala powder – 1/4 tsp
Bay leaf – 1-2
Cinnamon stick – 1/2 inch
Black cardamom – 2
Green cardomom – 2-3
Cumin seeds -1/2 tsp
Black peppercorn – 4-5
Sugar – 1/2 tsp
Salt – to taste
Mustard oil – 5-6 tbsp
Fresh coriander leaves – 2 tbsp (chopped fine)
Peel and cut the jackfruit into 1 1/2 – 2 inch pieces. Make a cut in the seeds if there are large ones or they will burst while frying or slice them if they are not too stubborn). (Be careful with that) Wash and keep aside.
Do oil your hands and knife before peeling and chopping Jackfruit. It gets very sticky due to the milky gum like substance it secrets.
2. Wash, peel and chop potatoes in 1 inch cubes.
3. Parboil both the vegetables with a little salt and turmeric. Drain the water and keep aside the boiled veggies.
4. Heat a wok and add the mustard oil to it. Bring it to smoking point and reduce the heat. Fry both potatoes and jackfruit one by one. Remove in a plate covered with kitchen towel.
5. In the same oil add Bayleave, panch poran, cinnamon stick, black peppercorn, black and green cardamom, Give it a stir.
6. Once the seeds begin to splutter add the sliced onions and fry till light golden brown. Add sugar to it and stir. Add the grated onion and ginger – garlic paste. Fry till the rawness of the paste goes away and it is nicely browned.
7. Add chopped or grated tomatoes and fry till oil leaves sides and then add the dry powdered masalas and give a nice stir.
8. Now add the parboiled potatoes and jackfruit pieces. Mix nicely so that the masala gets incorporated properly into the veggies. Cover and cook for a few minutes on low- medium flame.
9. Once the veggies absorb the masala completely, add more warm water for the curry. Give a good stir and bring it to boil.
10. Let it simmer for sometime till a nice gravy is ready. Add chopped coriander leaves and garam masala to it. Also add a tablespoon of pure homemade ghee for flavor.
Turn off the flame and serve hot with roti or rice.
Happy Holi to all my readers and friends. Respect boundaries and have a colorful life ahead.