The jackfruit (Artocarpusheterophyllus), also known as jack tree, jakfruit, or sometimes simply jack or jak, is a species of tree in the fig, mulberry and breadfruit family (Moraceae).
It is native to parts of South and Southeast Asia and is believed to have originated in the southwestern rain forests of the Western Ghats in the Indian Subcontinent, in present-day Kerala, West Bengal, coastal Karnataka, and Maharashtra, but also Indonesia.
On the outside, this giant fruit resembles something out of the Jurassic era and emits a sweet yet putrid stench.
It’s a good source of protein, potassium, calcium, and iron, it’s plentiful, and it has tons of uses. “It’s a very versatile fruit,” says a plant biologist at Northwestern University and the Chicago Botanic Garden who studies “underutilized” crops. “It can be your main meal and your dessert all in one.”
Health Benefits of Jackfruit
Jackfruit is known as the jack of all fruits. It is a rich source of vitamin, minerals, phytonutrients, carbohydrate, electrolytes, fiber, fat and protein. This fruit also contains calorie but no cholesterol or saturated fats. Consume jackfruit for the best taste, nutrition and its many health benefits.Jackfruit is infused with a diverse set of vitamins such as vitamin C and A, thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, calcium, potassium (with 303 mg found per 100 g), iron, zinc, sodium and folic acid.It is antibacterial and antiviral which is a great support to the immune system.
Jackfruit is rich in magnesium that helps build and strengthen your bones. People who consume potassium and magnesium rich food have higher bone density and stronger bones.
Studies on Jackfruit
Jackfruit is an indigenous and underutilized fruit crop with great yield potential and excellent nutritional qualities. However, its intense flavor may hinder its liking by the consumers. Through processing and product diversification, it is possible to alter the flavor and make it acceptable to the consumers. It is a well-known fact that salty snacks are a popular group of food item around the globe. Papad (wafer-like snack product) from jackfruit has been produced and consumed in jackfruit-growing areas in India.
The physico-chemical properties of starch from jackfruit seed and mung bean were investigated. Jackfruit seed starch had much higher resistant starch content (26.99%) than that of mung bean starch (4.04%). Furthermore, jackfruit seed starch had a higher gelatinization temperature (To) that required more gelatinization energy (ΔH) compared to mung bean starch.
The jackfruit is rich in calories and nutrients and if a person eats 10 to 12 bulbs, he or she won’t need food for another 12 hours. For these reasons, this fruit could be utilized to help save millions of people from hunger.
Jackfruit Healthy Recipe: Easy Jackfruit Curry
Ingredients: Jicama Slaw
- 500 grams fresh jackfruit
- 2 medium tomatoes pureed
- 1 tsp. virgin coconut oil
- ½ tsp. cumin seeds
- ½ tsp. mustard seeds
- ½ tsp. nigella seeds
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 dried red chili peppers
- 1 small onion (chopped)
- 1 inch ginger (chopped)
- 1 tsp. coriander powder
- ½ tsp. turmeric
- ¼ tsp. black pepper
- ½ to ¾ tsp. Himalayan salt
- 1 to 1.5 cups of water
- Heat extra virgin coconut oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the cumin, nigella and mustard seeds and let them sizzle for about a minute. Add the bay leaves and red chili peppers, and then cook for several seconds. Add the onion, garlic and ginger, and just a pinch of Himalayan salt. Cook until translucent (five to six minutes) and remember to mix occasionally.
- Add the turmeric, coriander and black pepper, mixing well. Stir while adding the pureed tomato, jackfruit and the rest of the salt. Cover and cook for approximately 15 minutes.
- Uncover and cook for another few minutes to make the tomato puree thicker. The jackfruit can also be shredded.
- Add the water and then cover and cook for 15 minutes. Taste and adjust the flavor accordingly, then reduce the heat to medium low and cook for an extra 10 minutes or longer, until your desired consistency is achieved. Garnish with cilantro and serve.