The jackfruit is the largest tree-borne fruit in the world, reaching 80 pounds in weight, up to 36 inches in length, and 20 inches in diameter. This oval fruit has a pale-green to dark-yellow rind when ripe and is covered with short, sharp, hexagonal, fleshy spines. The interior consists of large, soft, yellow bulbs that taste like banana. The flesh encloses hundreds of smooth,
oval, light-brown seeds.
Scientific name Artocarpus heterophyllus
Common name jackfruit,
♥ A good source of vitamin C
♥ Provides a moderate amount
of vitamin A (beta-carotene).
A relative of breadfruit, jack fruit comes in two main varieties. One variety has a fibrous, soft, sweet flesh with a texture similar to that of raw oysters. The other, more commercially important, variety is crisp and almost crunchy with a flavor that is not quite as sweet. This latter
variety is more palatable to western tastes. flowering, as indicated by a change in fruit color from light green to yellow brown.
After ripening, the fruits turn brown and spoil very quickly.
Origin & Botanical Facts
Believed to be indigenous to the rain forests of India, the jack fruit has spread to other parts of India, southeast Asia, the East Indies, the Philippines, central and eastern Africa, Brazil, and Suriname. Although adapted to humid tropical and near-tropical climates where it can reach
the size of a large eastern oak, the mature jack fruit can withstand bouts of frost, unlike its cousin, the breadfruit.
Throughout Asia, unripe jack fruit is often boiled, fried, or roasted. The ripe fruit, which emits a pleasant smell and has a sweet taste, is usually eaten fresh as a dessert, or fermented and distilled to produce a liquor. Jack fruit also is preserved by drying or canning. Jack fruit seeds are roasted or boiled and eaten like chestnuts or, in India, used in curries.
The jack fruit is a good source of vitamin C. One serving also provides a moderate amount of vitamin A (beta-carotene).