Jackfruit - the other other white meat

When I read this insert in the March 2012 issue of Vegetarian Times I just knew that I had to give jackfruit a try:


A fruit that shreds and tastes like chicken? We didn't believe it until we tried canned young jackfruit. The Thai ingredient has a texture that mimics meat in hearty chilis, saucy stews, even gyros. Find it in Asian grocery stores (be sure to buy canned young jackfruit, not ripe jackfruit in syrup, which is sweet) and try it as a substitute for packaged mock meat crumbles or shreds.


Intrigued? I was! So, I went out to the store and picked up a can of young jackfruit.




The recipe I was following, Jackfruit Gyros, was from the same issue of VT. With my fingers I shredded the jackfruit slices and added them to a pan with onions. The shredded jackfruit looked just like chicken!




After the "meat" and onions were cooked and seasoned, we piled the mixture into pitas with raw onions, spinach, yogurt, and tomatoes. Delicious! My husband loved it too. The jackfruit was a tad lemony so next time I'm going to back off on the fresh squeezed lemon juice a bit.


The verdict? Jackfruit doesn't taste like much on its own - it absorbs the flavors of the dish. When shredded it looks just like chicken. I think it's a great way to fool my husband into thinking we're eating meat when we're really not - not that I would do that or anything!


Have you tried jackfruit? Will you try jackfruit? Have you ever even heard of it?



Comments

Lauren said…
I just bought a can today because I read the same article. Looking forward to trying it!
CraftyHope said…
What a great tip. We're not vegetarian, but we do try to have some meatless meals a few times a week. This sounds like an excellent option. Thanks so much for sharing it! Now if I can just find the stuff, the closest Asian market is about 45 minutes away :(
Tima Murrell said…
I just returned from Thailand so this was a very interesting post. I've had fresh jack fruit (not impressed). But now I'll have to try this. We stayed with friends who were vegetarian. I wonder is she knows this. After our trip my husband and I decided to become vegetarian ourselves, so thanks for the tip.
Mya said…
I am obsessed with young jackfruit. As vegetarians we're always looking for interesting meat alternatives. My only issue is the lack of protein, but I just make sure I get it elsewhere on a day we're having jackfruit for dinner. My absolute favorite recipe (so far) is one for pulled "pork". It is to DIE for. I've shared with friends and family, some vegetarian, most not, and they all loved it. If you haven't tried it yet you really should! You can find it here:
http://cleangreensimple.com/2011/05/carolina-pulled-pork-sandwich/

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