Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Amma's jackfruit biryani


Recommended Posts

suvir,

i'm very intrigued by the jackfruit biryani on the menu at amma (which has received positive reviews from people on the new york forum). does the fact that you refer to the fruit by the bengali name (kathal) mean that this is your take on a traditional bengali preparation? (or is kathal not just the bengali name for jackfruit?); in any event, can you tell us a little more about the origins of the dish? bengalis, of course, cook a lot with kathal (both the raw and ripe versions) but i am not familiar with this particular preparation.

regards,

mongo

Link to post
Share on other sites

this thread is getting to be quite the monologue.

okay, so i found a couple of links to kathal-rice dishes, one even called a kathal biryani. one site lists their dish as being from kerala, the other does not give a provenance:

http://www.bawarchi.com/cookbook/kerala4.html

http://www.rumela.com/recipe/indian_biryani_kathal.htm

it also appears that kathal is being grown in some places in the u.s:

http://www.fairchildgarden.org/research/jackfruit.html

this other site, which gives more info on the fruit suggests that attempts to grow the trees in the u.s have not been very successful:

http://www.crfg.org/pubs/ff/jackfruit.html

suvir, where are you sourcing yours from?

edited to add yet another link: everything you wanted to know about jackfruit but were too afraid to ask

Edited by mongo_jones (log)
Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey y'all I just read Rashmi Uday Singhs review of a 15 day old restaurant that has opened in Andheri _ Tantra. It specialises in Frontier Food. I noticed that they have a jack fruit biryani on their menu though they did not get a very good review for it.

Just thought youd all like to know....

Link to post
Share on other sites
Hey y'all I just read Rashmi Uday Singhs review of a 15 day old restaurant that has opened in Andheri _ Tantra. It specialises in Frontier Food. I noticed that they have a jack fruit biryani on their menu though they did not get a very good review for it.

Just thought youd all like to know....

Details ?? East or West ?

anil

Link to post
Share on other sites
i'm very intrigued by the jackfruit biryani on the menu at amma ...

Interesting.

Does this use the green jackfruit (called "enchor" in Bengali) or the ripe jackfruit (called "kanthal")?

I had never heard of this before, but wouldn't actually surprise me if using the green jackfruit.

There are many dishes in Bengal which use "enchor". When growing up, I never used to like "enchor", which my mom would try to pass off as "vegetarian meat"! Surprisingly now that no one tries to force it one me, I actually like it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

bong, you are a better bong than me. i still can't eat kathal. this is largely because of how much the damned ripe fruit stinks. i can't get it out of my mind. we lived in north bengal for some time and there were jackfruit trees everywhere. i think i've been permanently scarred by childhood bicycle rides along semi-rural roads seeing this hideous fruit hanging from this hideous tree with its horrible stink permeating the countryside for miles around.

interestingly, we have a bangal/ghoti type split in the family over kathal and shutki. i eat shutki now but growing up my mother and i refused to eat either while my father (originally from mymensingh) and my sister relished them. i would actually leave the house if ripe kathal was brought in. now it doesn't matter even if i see it on a menu in a restaurant and don't actually have to see it--i can remember the stink as vividly as though it were present. a sense-memory thing. my loss, probably--but i'll live.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Who said anything about eating kanthal? :rolleyes: I still don't like kanthal.

I was talking about enchor, which is the "green jackfruit". Even though it's the same fruit, it tastes quite different from kanthal.

(incidentally, dishes with green jackfriuit a.k.a "enchor" is quite common in the Thai restaurants in the USA)

Shukto, on the other hand, can be heavenly when done right (giving away my "ghoti" roots here...)

Link to post
Share on other sites

Having been fortunate enough to eat Amma's jackfruit biryani, I can say that it is made with enchor.

Here's a (regrettably out-of-focus) picture I took:

i2765.jpg

The biryani was topped by a tandoori grilled lamb chop and accompanied by a wondeful pear chutney.

BTW, I'm not even bong but I like ripe jackfruit - chopped up small and added to shaved ice with coconut milk.

Sun-Ki Chai
http://www2.hawaii.edu/~sunki/

Former Hawaii Forum Host

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Just a redundant aside to the thread, but one which might provide a glimpse into how difficult food preparation can be in traditional India, with serious danger to the women who are left to handle such tasks, while men enjoy the gustatory delights served up to them in style.

Green jackfruit is quite heavy, at least 4 lbs+, encased in a thick, hard, spiny rind even at a young stage; when cut, it exudes copious quantities of a sticky sap, similar to that from rubber trees. The sap is extremely sticky and congeals upon release; women rub their hands with mustard oil, and balancing the fruit in both hands, drive it down the blades of a bonti, an infernal device : a curved blade attached to a wooden slat, used on the floor. Bengali friends can attest to its non-ergonomic and inimical design. Cutting vegetables entails that the thumb push the hard vegetable right up to, and resting on, the very sharp edge. Peeling requires two-handed manipulation of the infernal fruit and its thick, sticky rind around a most recalcitrant implement, that bonti. This lethal sticky-slippery combination is what must be dealt with to prepare 'enchor' for food, besides blanching.

Other killer vegetables are the banana floweing stem and the chalta fruit [Dillenia].

BTW, in Bengal, even straw was cut into pieces [for cattle] by an larger, serrated, bonti; a more lethal combination is hard to envision.

Edited by v. gautam (log)
Link to post
Share on other sites

jackfruit takes about as kindly to hacking as the pentagon

edited to add: plus people who know how to use botis don't have any problems with them. i wonder how suvir and crew dismantle their jackfruit.

you should see what is used to grate fresh coconut out of the shell--i think there might be a picture on my food-trip page somewhere.

Edited by mongo_jones (log)
Link to post
Share on other sites

Pan,

You have just touched upon a very sensitive issue, on 2 grounds:

One, the deliberate immiserization/marginalization of women in 18th/19th century Bengal, keep them barefoot and pregnant, as it were--there is more to this than can be dealt with in these forums. For example, a whole pumpkin could never be halved by Brahman women; they would have to wait until the eldest brother in law could make himself available for this duty. All manner of symbolic and ritual content too recondite for this place. People still sarcastically refer to a useless layabout as "kumro kata barthakur' or pumpkin cutting elder brother-in law.

Why not knives: another sensitive area touching upon Hindu-Muslim relations [Muslims use knives] and upon the symbolic use of knife 'kartari prayoga' in ritual sacrifice, male standing erect, knife touching ground etc. that i am not comfortable discussing here without elaborate context.

Link to post
Share on other sites

it should be noted that the matters of ritual and ritual control that gautam is describing are/were largely restricted to upper-caste (if not class) brahmins in bengal. this is not to say that lower caste hindu bengalis would/do not have patriarchal rituals of their own but it is important not to elide high-caste brahmin with hindu, or bengali for that matter. of course, down in the lower recesses (in terms of caste) of bengali society (or for that matter all indian) entirely different situations apply--sometimes, as in the case of tribal societies (which were under far less pressure in the 18th and 19th centuries than they are now) these are matriarchal.

i haven't read chiritra devi banerjee's book so i'm not sure to what extent its reach is dominated by a particular caste experience and history. anyone?

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Similar Content

    • By Sheel
      Prawn Balchao is a very famous Goan pickle that has a sweet, spicy and tangy flavor to it. 
      For the balchao paste you will need:
      > 8-10 kashmiri red chillies
      > 4-5 Byadagi red chillies
      > 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
      > 1/2 tsk turmeric powder 
      > 1 tsp peppercorn
      > 6 garlic cloves
      > 1/2 tsp cloves
      > 1 inch cinnamon stick
      > Vinegar 
      First you will need to marinate about 250 grams of prawns in some turmeric powder and salt. After 15 minutes deep fry them in oil till them become golden n crisp. Set them aside and add tsp vinegar to them and let it sit for 1 hour. Now, make a paste of all the ingredients mentioned under the balchao paste and make sure not to add any water. In the same pan used for fryin the prawns, add in some chopped garlic and ginger. Lightly fry them and immediately add one whole chopped onion. Next, add the balchao paste amd let it cook for 2-3 minutes. Add in the prawns and cook until the gravy thickens. Finally add 1 tsp sugar and salt according to your taste. Allow it to cool. This can be stored in a glass jar. Let this mature for 1-3 weeks before its use. Make sure never to use water at any stage. This can be enjoyed with a simple lentil curry and rice.
    • By Deeps
      This is one of my daughter favorite dishes, being mild and less spicy she loves this rice dish.  Its super easy to make and goes well with most Indian curries.
      Do try this out and I am sure you will be happy with the results.
       

       
      Prep Time : 5 mins
      Cook Time: 5 mins
      Serves: 2
       
      Ingredients:
      1 cup rice(basmati), cooked
      1/2 cup coconut, shredded or grated
      1 green chili, slit
      1 dried red chili
      1 1/2 tablespoon oil/ghee(clarified butter)
      1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
      1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
      1/2 tablespoon chana dal(split chickpeas)
      1/2 tablespoon urad dal(split black gram)
      1 teaspoon ginger, finely chopped
      A pinch of hing (asafoetida)
      Few curry leaves
      Salt to taste
       
      Directions
      1) Heat oil/ghee(clarified butter) in a pan in medium flame. I used coconut oil here because it tastes best for this dish.
      2) Add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, chana dal(split chickpeas), urad dal(split black gram), green chili, dried red chili, ginger and curry leaves. Fry this for 30 seconds in medium flame. The trick is to ensure that these are fried but not burned.
      3) Add a pinch of hing(asafoetida) and mix well.
      4) Now add the cooked rice and coconut. Stir well for about 15 to 20 seconds and switch off the flame.
      5) Finally add salt into this and mix well. You could add peanuts or cashew nuts if you prefer. Goes well with most curries.
    • By loki
      Sour Tomatillo Achar

      Made this one up from a recipe for lemons. It really works for tomatilloes. A unique spice mix, and really sour for a 'different' type of pickle, or achar. It is based on a Marwari recipe - from the arid north-western part of India. Tomatilloes are not used in India (or at least not much) but are quite productive plants in my garden while lemons or other sour fruits are not possible to grow here. No vinegar or lemon juice is used, because tomatilloes are very acidic and don't need any extra.

      Ingredients
      3 lbs tomatilloes husks removed and quartered
      1/4 cup salt
      1 Tbs black mustard seeds
      2 star anise buds
      10 dried chilies (I used very hot yellow peppers)
      1 tsp fenugreek seeds
      2 inch ginger (ground to a paste)
      2 TBL dark brown sugar
      1/2 cup sugar

      1. In a large bowl, put the tomatilloes and sprinkle salt over them. Cover it and leave for a day, mixing occasionally.

      2. Next day drain the tomatilloes.

      3. Dry roast the star anise (put in first as these take longer, the black mustard, and the chilie pods (add last and barely brown in places). Cool.

      4. Grind the roasted spices with the fenugreek and put aside.

      5. Add tomatilloes, ginger, sugars, and everything else to a large pan and heat to boiling.

      6. Cook till fully hot and boiling.

      7. Fill half-pint jars and seal.
    • By loki
      Sweet Eggplant Pickle

      This is an Indian pickle, some would call a chutney, that I made up from several sources and my own tastes. It is based it on my favorite sweet brinjal (eggplant here in the US) pickle available commercially. It has onion and garlic, which are often omitted in some recipes due to dietary restrictions of some religious orders. It also has dates which I added on my own based on another pickle I love. I also used olive oil as mustard oil is not available and I like it's taste in these pickles. Use other oils if you like. This has more spices than the commercial type - and I think it's superior. I avoided black mustard seed, fenugreek, and cumin because almost all other pickles use these and they start to taste the same. One recipe from Andhra Pradesh used neither and I followed it a little. It's wonderful with all sorts of Indian foods - and also used for many other dishes, especially appetizers.
      SPICE MIX (Masala)
      4 Tbs coriander seeds
      3 hot chilies (I used a very hot Habanero type, so use more if you use others)
      18 cardamom pods
      2 inches cinnamon
      24 cloves
      1 1/2 Tbs peppercorns
      MAIN INGREDIENTS
      1 cups olive oil
      4 inches fresh ginger, minced fine, about 1/2 cup
      6 cloves garlic, minced
      1 large onion finely chopped
      3 lb eggplant, diced, 1/4 inch cubes
      1/2 lb chopped dates
      1 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
      2 cups rice vinegar (4.3 percent acidity or more)
      2 cups brown sugar
      2 Tbs salt
      2 tsp citric acid
      Spice Mix (Masala)

      1. Dry roast half the coriander seeds in a pan till they begin to brown slightly and become fragrant - do not burn. Cool.

      2. Put roasted and raw coriander seeds and all the other spices in a spice mill and grind till quite fine, or use a mortar and pestle. Put aside.

      Main Pickle

      1. Heat half the oil and fry ginger till slightly browned, slowly.

      2. Add garlic, onion, and half the salt and fry slowly till these begin to brown a bit too.

      3. Add eggplant, turmeric, and spice mix (Masala) and combine well. Fry for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

      4. Add rest of ingredients, including rest of the salt and olive oil and heat slowly to a boil.

      5. Boil for about 5 minutes. Add a little water if too thick - it should be nearly covered with liquid, but not quite - it will thin upon cooking so wait to add the water till heated through.

      6. Bottle in sterilized jars and seal according to your local pickling instructions. This recipe will be sufficiently acidic.
    • By rxrfrx
      South Indian Style Broccoli
      Serves 2 as Main Dish.
      Broccoli isn't a traditional Indian vegetable, but I designed this recipe to use up leftover boiled broccoli in the style of cauliflower.

      3 c broccoli, cut up and cooked
      3 T oil
      2 T cumin seeds
      2 tsp tumeric
      2 tsp corriander powder
      2 green chilis, sliced thinly
      1/2 c chopped cilantro
      salt, to taste

      Fry the spices in the oil until they smoke a little. Add the broccoli and chilis and fry for a couple minutes to get the flavors mixed. Add salt to taste and stir in the cilantro before serving with chapati.
      Bonus recipe: just before adding the cilantro, crack 2-4 eggs into the pan and stir them around.
      Keywords: Main Dish, Side, Easy, Vegan, Vegetables, Indian
      ( RG2107 )
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...