Alex Stumpf. Alex Stumpf.

What’s great about jackfruit?

Jackfruit seeds are great cancer protection, high in protein and vitamin A. Jackfruit is also a great meat replacement for vegetarians or vegans.

Is it easy to source in the region?

It is very much available in the UAE-market — fresh-ripe, already cleaned, or even raw and green uncleaned. I’m using the uncleaned green one as I like to cook in a savoury way to offer my vegetarian clientele a good variety in my menu.

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What should you look for when buying jackfruit?

If you are going to buy a ripe one ready to eat, just ensure it is bright yellow so it is sweet enough.

Is it challenging to use?

Well, yes, there is a reason why the ripe ones come already cleaned. First of all it’s a massive fruit when ripe — between 2-3kg — but you can get it even larger, up to 6kg. Also, the fruit is super sticky. You have to wear gloves when you clean it as even with soap it’s hard to remove the sticky glue from your fingers. But out of all challenges, be ready for a strong smell from the ripe ones when they’re at room temperature.

What’s the best way to use it?

The best two ways are either raw as a fruit or to turn it in a nice exotic curry with the unripe fruit.