Liuzhou Laowai

Random thoughts on life in Liuzhou, Guangxi, China

Friday Food 102 – Jackfruit

Friday food is an occasional article about one of the more unusual food items to be found in Liuzhou that week. This week, the fruit that Jack built.

Jackfruit is the huge fruit of a tree in the mulberry family, native to South and SE Asia, but now grown across Africa and parts of Central and South America. I first came across it in Jamaica.

jackfruit segments 800

Every year, from around September on towards the end of the year, the streets of Liuzhou are awash with jackfruit vendors. They open the huge things then dig out the fruit segments leaving the skin and pith behind.

jackfruit vendor

Jackfruit on stall in Liuzhou

Jackfruit on stall in Liuzhou

The fruit is eaten as is, but can also be dried and /or made into chips. It is sometimes used to flavour ice cream. The taste is sweet and subtle, with hints of pineapple and honey (see linguistic note below).

The seeds are also edible and are sold separately. They need to be boiled, baked or roasted.  Seeds are eaten as snacks after either boiling or roasting. When roasted the flavour of the seeds is said to be comparable to chestnuts.

Jackfruit seeds

Jackfruit seeds

In standard Chinese, jackfruit is 波罗蜜, but here in Guangxi, most people use 菠罗蜜. The only difference is the first character. The pronunciation and tones are identical. However, the Guangxi version alludes to the taste – 菠罗 means ‘pineapple’ and 蜜 means ‘honey’. ‘Pineapple honey’. I like it.

jackfruit segments (800 -1)

. This entry was posted on Friday, December 6th, 2013 at 7:00 am and is filed under Food and Drink, Friday Food. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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