The Jack of all Diets
Jackfruit is the meat-substitute of the moment for vegans & vegetarians around the world.
The jackfruit, known as kha-noon in Thailand, is a delicious miracle food that originated in South Asia. It is packed full of fibre, is nutritionally dense and unusually versatile.
Ripe jackfruit famously smells and tastes like a cross between a pineapple and a banana, with a slight fermented kick. But it is the fruit in its unripe, fibrous state that has suddenly piqued the interest of the Western palate.
Unripe jackfruit has been used for millennia in South Asia as a meat substitute and is even called ‘tree mutton’ in Bengali. And it is this unusual quality that has boosted its popularity in the West.
The rise of veganism and vegetarianism in the western world has fuelled a demand for meat substitutes, and the humble jackfruit fits the bill perfectly. The mild-flavoured fruit easily absorbs spices and seasonings and also has a meaty, dense texture that shreds like pulled pork.
Young jackfruit is popping up on Western menus in everything from pulled jackfruit tacos to jackfruit ‘sushi’ to vegan ‘pulled pork’ sandwiches. Even the seeds of the fruit, which are high in protein, iron, phosphorus, and Vitamin B, are being ground into flour for gluten-free baking.
If you’re going vegan or trying to introduce more meat-free days into your diet, this delicious superfood will open the door to new culinary possibilities. For vegans, vegetarians and flexitarians everywhere, the jackfruit may soon become a pantry staple.