Asia and Pacific,  India,  Tamil Nadu

Jackfruits of Panruti

Jackfruit from Panruti, Tamil Nadu, is renowned for its exceptional characteristics and culinary versatility. Panruti is a town located in the Cuddalore district of Tamil Nadu, India. The region’s jackfruit stands out for its significant size, sweet flavor, and unique texture.

Panruti’s jackfruit trees are prolific bearers, with some healthy specimens yielding up to an impressive 150 to 200 fruits per year. This abundance makes the jackfruit tree a prized asset for farmers in the area.

In its unripe form, the fruit’s firm and fibrous nature lends itself well to savory dishes such as curries and salads in Tamil cuisine. Popular dishes featuring unripe jackfruit include Jackfruit Biryani, a fragrant rice dish layered with spiced jackfruit, and Palakai Poriyal, a flavorful stir-fry with jackfruit pieces, coconut, and spices.

As the jackfruit ripens, it transforms into a soft, sweet treat with tropical flavors reminiscent of pineapple, mango, and banana. Ripe jackfruit is used in various desserts like cakes, puddings, and ice cream. Tamil culinary traditions include dishes like Jackfruit Payasam, a creamy dessert with ripe jackfruit, coconut milk, and jaggery, and Elai Adai, a sweet delicacy of rice flour, coconut, jaggery, chopped jackfruit, all steamed in a banana leaf.

Beyond its delicious fruits, the jackfruit tree offers versatile benefits. Its leaves are eco-friendly serving plates, adding a subtle aroma to dishes, while the durable and termite-resistant wood is prized for crafting furniture and musical instruments.