You might have wandered past a jackfruit or two at the grocery store, wondering at the culinary value of what appears to be a gargantuan hedgehog. We decided to find out for ourselves, and show you some basics of how to prepare a jackfruit.
Working with fresh jackfruit wasn't as daunting as we'd originally thought. As with most fresh ingredients, if you have some time and energy to devote an extra bit of care to its preparation, the payoff in flavor and texture is well worth it. Jackfruit is sweet, citrusy, and incredibly fragrant once you get under the rough exterior.
A few things to note:
There are tons of videos and articles about how to cut up a jackfruit- this is the process that worked best for us. Let us know what you think!
How to cut up a jackfruit:
1. Carefully grease a large kitchen knife with a bit of coconut oil- jackfruit is naturally sticky, and the oil will help make your first few cuts much easier.
2. Lay down some plastic wrap over your workspace, ideally right on the counter. You'll need more room than most cutting boards offer, and the stickiness is easier to clean up if you don't have to scrub it off of your countertop.
3. Make a single cut down the whole length of the fruit, splitting it in half:
4. Remove any visible seeds by hand, and collect in a small bowl if you'd like to roast them later.
5. Quarter the two halves (making four large slices total).
6. Slice off the thick, brown core from the top of each quarter, freeing up the smaller white fibers and yellow fruit. Make a single long cut down the central spine, then a few cuts perpendicular or diagonal to the long one (similar to how you might cut a mango).
7. Dig out the sweet yellow fruit, being careful to remove any remaining seeds and peeling off the ribbon-like white fibers. Collect the fruit in a separate bowl.
We made it into a tasty pile of nachos, complete with a blended jackfruit sauce, roasted seeds, and roasted jackfruit barbecue.