I'm back with another Jackfruit post. Those who have been following my blog would’ve known that my Fil, recently got, 3 Jackfruits. With one of them, we prepared the chakka curry and the remaining, was made into this delicious Chakka Varatti or jackfruit jam/preserve.
Since my maternal grandparents were settled in Chennai, we used to come to Chennai from wherever we were for our summer vacations. So we never actually got many chances to visit Kerala, our native place and spend time there. I have very vague memories of my few visits to our village in Kerala, where my great grandparents lived. Though, few things are clearly etched in my memory, like running around the big house from the backyard to the front yard, playing hide and seek with my brother and others.
I cannot forget the food that was served there, fresh and hot. It tasted so good. Once when I visited, it was Jackfruit season, and I clearly remember my Great Grandma sitting and frying Jackfruit Chips, the aroma of coconut oil wafting throughout the house. I and my brother would stand next to her waiting for our share of fresh homemade chips. Everyone in the house would be invariably eating jackfruit dipped in honey. She also made Chakka Varatti in big uruli and packed for us to carry back. Even the Jackfruit seeds were used in Molagootal and Mezhukuperatti. So that’s how versatile this fruit is and how every part of it is used up in a delicious way. Hmmm….some precious memories.
Coming back to the present, like I said earlier, we made chakka varati with the remaining jackfruits. I owe this post totally to my FIL and Mil, without whom, this post would’ve never appeared on my space. Making Chakka varatti is easy but very laborious and time consuming. First the fruits need to be pulled out and deseeded. Then it is cooked and pureed and later cooked with jaggery, stirring every now and then. The whole process can easily take upto 3 hours (not including the cleaning of fruit). But the time depends on the quantity you are making. If you are preparing in lesser quantity, it will take lesser time. But I can assure you of a really sweet and delicious end result. Phew! A long post, after a very long time. Off to the recipe:
What you’ll need
- Jackfruit Puree – 6 cups *(refer notes)
- Powdered Jaggery – 6 cups
- Ghee – ¾ cup
- Heat a heavy bottomed Kadai or Uruli, add the jaggery.
- Dissolve the jaggery in about 1 cup of water.
- Strain and remove the impurities. Wash the kadai and pour back the jaggery syrup into the kadai.
- Let it boil on medium heat till one string consistency.
- Then add the pureed jackfruit and cook on medium heat, stirring once in a while to avoid burning.
- Do not cook on high flame.
- Once all the moisture is absorbed and the mixture starts thickening add the ghee little at a time or whenever you feel the mixture sticking to the bottom.
- Keep stirring and cooking till the mixture leaves the sides of the kadai. To reach this stage it took me almost 3 hours for the 6 cups of jackfruit puree.
- Remove from flame and let it cool naturally. Transfer into clean containers and keep dry.
Delicious chakka varatti is ready. Eat it as it is or make ela adai, Pradhaman or have it with Adai or even as bread spread.
- Remove the fruit bulbs, deseed them. Pressure cook in a vessel for 3 whistles, with about ½ cup water. Allow to cool naturally and grind to a smooth paste.
- This preserve stays fresh for a long time if used with care. Do not use wet spoons or put your hand to remove the preserve.