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Friday, March 11, 2016

The Right Way to Eat Jackfruit? + Non-Recipe

I haven't eaten meat in 10 or 11 years and although all my meat-eating friends and relatives see that as limiting my food choices, they couldn't be more wrong. Since cutting meat out of my diet, I have been so much more adventurous with food. I never would have tried so many different amazing foods if they weren't recommend by other vegetarians. One of those foods is jackfruit. I started hearing about it from so many people, but I never actually found it in stores. I looked at every grocery store, Asian market, and health food store. Finally, I bought some canned jackfruit from Amazon.

Spencer and I made some BBQ jackfruit as soon as we got it and paired it with baked beans and potato salad. I loved it, while Spencer had mixed feelings (he said he didn't like it, yet he continued to eat it).

The next morning, I woke up with a super stomach ache. I was experiencing sharp pains, bloating, and general discomfort. Spencer started Googling and we found out that many other people experienced digestion issues after eating jackfruit. Great. After some more Googling, we found out there are apparently guidelines to follow before and after consuming jackfruit. Why did no one ever tell me about that? I had so many people raving to me about jackfruit but none of them ever mentioned the set of rules that went along with eating it.

According to this site, jackfruit is heavy and sticky which makes it difficult to digest. To avoid an upset stomach, you're supposed to
  • eat the jackfruit while you're hungry and before you eat anything else
  • avoid oily foods
  • season the jackfruit with mild spices (cumin, pepper, tumeric) or add honey to it
  • never over-eat it
  • never ever drink ice water after eating jackfruit (which I never would have thought of)
Well, I definitely drank lots of ice water after eating my jackfruit because I'm a human and I like to stay hydrated. 

So now that you've read the disclaimer about this delicious food, here's a non-recipe for you. By "non-recipe" I mean that I seldom measure anything while cooking and I always encourage people to "just do whatever" when it comes to cooking. Experiment! Add 7 cloves of garlic! Who cares! You do you.

For chipotle jackfruit tacos, gather your ingredients. Mine happened to be: 
  • canned jackfruit
  • turmeric
  • raspberry chipotle sauce
  • honey
  • olive oil
I added the honey to sweeten up the sauce and to help with digestion. I added the turmeric to help with digestion and because I add turmeric to as much food as I can. It's so, so good for you. 

jackfruit

  • strain/drain the brine from the jackfruit, rinse with water
  • I cut the chunks of jackfruit smaller
  • cooked it in a nonstick pan with a wee bit of olive oil
  • added the chipotle sauce, turmeric, and honey, mixed it up
Boom, done. The whole process took 10 minutes. I put it in a taco shell, added a big 'ol heap of guacamole, some red cabbage, pea shoots, and cilantro. 

jackfruit taco

The only thing I would have done differently was choose a less-spicy sauce. The raspberry chipotle sauce packed more of a punch than I thought it would and by the time I was done eating, I was dying for a glass of water. Since I was determined to avoid a stomach ache, instead of quickly quenching my thirst, I spent 10 minutes making fresh juice. And good news, I didn't get a stomach ache this time!
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