Jackfruit is the hottest new trend in the vegan world at the moment, mainly for its ability to mimic the texture of pulled pork, but without the saturated fat, acidity, calories and cruelty.
Jackfruit is a tropical plant from Southeast Asia. This strange looking fruit is bright green and spiky and claims the record for the biggest tree-grown fruit, reaching a whopping 90cm in length by 50cm in diameter, and weighing in at up to 35kg! It is highly nutritious, containing antioxidants, fibre, vitamins A and C, and minerals calcium, iron, magnesium and potassium.
Apart from the obvious BBQ ‘pulled pork’ style dishes that can be created with this unusual ingredient, there are so many other ways to enjoy it. Jackfruit makes a great substitute for chicken and fish and is often used in Japanese style Teriyaki dishes and vegan fish/crab cake type recipes. As it doesn’t have much flavour of its own, it takes on spices, sauces and marinades well. The only limit is your imagination.
Tinned jackfruit is easiest to use and many people believe it gives better results in recipes than using fresh. You can buy it tinned in water or brine. Be aware that it also comes in syrup – this is not what you want when creating savoury dishes, it will be horrible!
Our tinned jackfruit comes in brine and is organic too, so is perfect for all your savoury recipe creations. This is our take on classic Mexican tacos made with this versatile fruit.
To make the jackfruit taco ‘meat’:
- Heat the coconut oil in a large frying pan or wok over a medium heat
- Add the spring onions, peppers, garlic, herbs and spices and cook for around 5 minutes to soften
- Meanwhile prepare the jackfruit by rinsing well, removing the core and dicing it, removing and discarding the seeds, and shredding the stringy part with your hands or a fork
- Add the prepared jackfruit to the pan and fry for 2 minutes, then add the tomato paste, beans, Worcestershire sauce and veggie stock and simmer for 10-15 minutes until the jackfruit is soft and all the liquid has gone
- Season to taste with salt and pepper and transfer to a warmed bowl or dish for serving
To make the chunky guacamole:
- Cube the avocado, place in a large bowl and mash a bit, keeping some chunky bits for texture
- Cut the cherry tomatoes into 8ths and add to the bowl with the lime juice and spring onions
- Season to taste with salt and pepper
- Place the bowl of jackfruit taco filling on the table with the taco shells or romaine lettuce leaves, guacamole, coconut yoghurt or vegan sour cream, vegan cheese (if using), salad leaves or shredded lettuce, chopped red chilli and lime wedges