Gone are the days of simply neglecting jackfruits in
the courtyard, even in rural households. The jackfruit festival, in
Kozhikode, is a platform where entrepreneurs demonstrate the magical power
of the traditional Kerala fruit.
To Seetharaman of Wayand, jackfruit is not just a fruit
that provides food security once in a while, but a permanent life fruit that
earns his family’s livelihood. He says jackfruit can produce as many as food
recipes, that too with high values in proteins and medicine.
He explains the methods of making Jackfruit pappadam,
a hot item in one of the new varieties of jackfruit culinary.
Seetharaman is running his home based unit of jackfruit
dishes at Thrikkaipetta in Wayanad and his items have good market in and
He says that bulk enquiry for Jackfruit pappadam
is from Bangalore.
Monsoon time is the only off -season to this business,
says the agriculturist who grows all vegetables and cereals in his farm.
The decline of agriculture in Wayanad forms a big
question before human existence, especially for those who had been depending
on traditional farming for livelihood.
As an experiment, he turned to jackfruit processing at
his home with the technical help of Uravu Wayanad, a non-government
organization, promoting indigenous products. He engaged his family also and
thereafter he has not looked back; says Seetharaman.
He says there are at least fourty dishes from soups to
desserts that can be made using jackfruit. Varikka variety is mostly
preferred to prepare different dishes. One glass chakka varatty
(jackfruit jam made with sweet jackfruits, ghee and jaggery) is enough to
make thirty glasses of payasam with coconut milk.
Hundreds of entrepreneurs like Seethraman are
participating in the state jackfruit festival, organized by the Jackfruit
Promotion Council at the Govt. Model High School in Kozhikode. Many small
and big entrepreneurs, self- help groups, residents associations etc. are
also exhibiting their innovations in the fair.
Sri Lankan jackfruit eatables are on display at the
exhibition along with Kerala traditional jackfruit dishes like Jack fruit
payasam, jackfruit fry or chips and jackfruit puzhukku
Jack fruit pickle, jams, halwa, curries, jackfruit
seed Avalos powder, peda, chutney, ice cream, jackfruit juice and what more!
Jackfruit puzhukku (spicy dish made of raw
jackfruit) and chicken curry sold at the fest was a great attraction at the
fair. Jackfruit seed powder and toffee are some of the items displayed by
‘Even, burgers and cutlets can be made from
jackfruit.’-say members of Sreyas Social Service team who also
provide technical support to jackfruit farmers and entrepreneurs to prepare
value added products.
Visitors had a chance to taste and buy the nostalgic
products like Jackfruit unniyappam and jackfruit vadas from the stalls like
Ruchi Karshaka Koottayma. This stall is also attracting hundreds of
Quality jackfruit saplings are also on display for
Books and CDs of recipes are arranged by the Centre
of Innovation in Science and Social Action, Thiruvananthapuram. ‘No part
of jackfruit is waste. Each and every part of jackfruit can be processed to
make dishes’- say Kudumbasree people who participate to sell their jackfruit
Many students who visited the exhibition say they have
really enjoyed the sight of many new jackfruit dishes.
“Jackfruits are a major seasonal and nutritious food in
Kerala households. Traditional homesteads had few jack trees and huge
quantities of fruits which were used in different stages- raw as vegetable,
fried as chips, used as fresh ripe fruits, or even made into a jam like form
named varatty. Still, there were limitations to utilize the fruit
from a homestead within a family itself. However with the advent of
innovative technology and identification of value addition methods, it helps
preserve and process this seasonal fruit and ensures its availability for
many months” said Reji Jacob, a keen visitor at the fair.
The festival spreads a message that jackfruit is no
more a ‘dump’ fruit that naturally falls down and remains unattended in
heaps in rural homesteads; but a golden fruit to make wonders, including
Photo exhibition, art shows and seminars are also being
conducted as part of jackfruit festival. The four day fete will conclude on
26th, May 2012.
A view of jackfruit show - Kozhikode
Jack fruit dishes - Kozhikode
Jack fruit festival at Govt Model Higher
Secondary School, Kozhikode
Jackfruit pappadam - Jackfruit festival,