Jackfrui t (kno w n a s ‘ kanoon’ in Thailand) is a species of tree in the fig, mulberry, and breadfruit family. The jackfruit plant originated in southwest India, where it grows abundantly. It spread to other parts of India, south east Asia, the Philippines, Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia.
Thailand is a m a jo r p roducer of jackfruit, which are often cut, prepared, and canned in a sugary syrup (or frozen in bags or boxes without syrup) and exported overseas, frequently to North America and Europe. The largest tree-borne fruit in the world, jackfruit can weigh up to 100 pounds and grow up to three feet long. The average size of the fruit is 10 to 25 pounds.
Jackfruit is enormous and prickly on the outside. It looks somewhat like durian, though jackfruit can be even larger. The huge trees produce massive, green, oblong fruits with a bumpy, fleshy exterior. On the inside, jackfruit contains many pale-yellow, plump bulbs, which are edible and joined at the core. The seeds can also be cooked, eaten on their own, or ground into flour. When selecting jackfruit, the fruit is green when unripe, and then turns light brown and has a strong fragrance when ripe.
A ripe, unopened jackfruit has a strong, unpleasant odor but the pulp of the opened fruit smells sweet. When eaten ripe and raw, the taste of jackfruit is sweet and similar to pineapple, mango, and banana. When it’s unripe, the jackfruit has more of a neutral flavor, like a potato, and works well in savory dishes. A great thing about green jackfruit is they don’t have a strong flavor on their own, so they’re able to soak up herbs, spices, and other flavorings.
This allows the fruit to be made into plant-based versions of shredded chicken, pulled pork, or other meat-based meals. Jackfruit can be made into a wide variety of dishes, both sweet and savory. The seeds are often boiled or roasted and eaten as snacks. They are similar to chestnuts or macadamia in taste and flavor.
Jackfruit isn’t only a fun and meatless way to add something new to your usual meals. It’s also packed with nutrients, including fibre and antioxidants. Jackfruit benefits are impressive. One researcher even called jackfruit a “miracle” food because it provides so many nutrients and calories. Two cups of jackfruit contain 310 calories and boast an impressive lineup of vitamins and minerals. The seeds are especially nutritious. They are high in protein, potassium, calcium, and iron.
Here are ways jackfruit may benefit your health:
Good for your immune system: jackfruit contains moderate levels of vitamin C, an antioxidant which helps your body fight free radicals and protects you from colds and other illnesses. Improve your digestion: Jackfruit is packed with fibre which helps improve digestion and prevent constipation.
May help prevent cancer:
Jackfruit contains phytonutrients, such as lignans, isoflavones, and saponins, which have anti-cancer properties. Jackfruit also contains many carotenoids, which have been found to help protect against cancer.
Boost your energy levels:
Jackfruit has B vitamins, particularly vitamin B6. And it’s high in complex carbs which can give you a boost of energy, without throwing your blood sugar levels out of whack.
Help maintain blood pressure and heart health:
Jackfruit also has moderate levels of potassium, which helps regulate blood pressure and reduce the risk of stroke and heart attack.
Support healthy vision:
Jackfruit has vitamin A, as well as beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin, which help improve vision and protects eye health.
Support skin health and reduces aging:
The water content in jackfruit helps keep your skin moisturized and youthful. The antioxidants help slow the aging process.
Good for bone health:
Jackfruit is high in calcium which strengthens and helps promote healthy bones. The right amount of magnesium helps with the absorption of calcium. and the high amount of potassium helps decrease the loss of calcium.