Friday, 11 May 2018

Enchor bhaja / Stir fried raw Jackfruit

Summer is blooming here.
Blooming .... yes. Because I have no other word for what is going on outside right now.
Mid morning temperature starts with 32 degrees and rises as much as it wishes to by late afternoon.  And then decides it loves the city so much that it refuses to down with the sun.
Clings on to the air, making it difficult to breathe even after night falls.
The floor and the walls of my balcony radiate the heat off. My plants stay still ... almost as if fearing to move lest the heat increases again.
I spray them with water liberally, only to feel the steam off the floor tiles and the wet earth.
On days when there is no breeze, I look out to see the dark profiles of the trees standing sombrely.
The rooster that I see of the few branches on the top of the Eucalyptus too does not move ... on other days I love to see the branches that form the neck and head move in the breeze ... as if nodding.
It is only when the restless bats shift branches that it moves ... sometimes the head moving away eerily and sometimes the plume of the tail.
Depresses me more .... just like the heat does these days.

 I have a thousand and one things going on at the same time in my life right now.
Some happy; some not as much.
And then there are a thousand and one recipes  .... okay, a little less maybe ... running in my head too.
To try, to post and share with you here.
But this heat ... nah .... will have to wait for some cooler days.
Meals have been mostly light ... you know if you are following me on Instagram. So I had nothing much to make a post on.
And then, my green grocer has been gone for a while now on vacation.
He is the only guy I rely on these days for fresh vegetables. So when he mentioned that he will be away for a while and I should buy some of that very fresh raw Jackfruit, I gave in.
He does make it easy for me, or else dealing with Enchor / raw jackfruit is painful and deters even the most expert housewife from handling it.

My tip on how to deal with a raw jackfruit is - get your grocer to peel it ... they have that big chopper and is easy for them .... and then make medium cuts from the sides till the center ... without cutting the center.
All I do is wash it well under running water and dump the whole thing into a pressure cooker with some salt and turmeric powder.
And cook it for two whistles on low heat.
And then, after cooling it, I cut it into blocks and store it in the freezer ... ready to take out and cook whenever I want to.
No oiling of hands, no sticky gum clinging to fingers, no messy jobs of papers and tissues and everything sticking together, etc. etc.

Try it ... and do remember to come back here and thank me. 😄😄

Now, to the recipe.
If you know me, if  you have tried my recipes, you will know by now how I am obsessed with simplifying recipes and cooking light.
So while the whole world has gone overboard with trying to cook the kathal / enchor / raw jackfruit with loads of masalas ... in keeping up with the idea of it being a vegetarian substitute to non vegetarian food .... I phoo the idea away and go ahead and cook it real light and flavourful. If you have not tried this recipe yet, you are surely missing something good this summer.
And then, today I made this light bhaja or stir fry.
I was so amazed and at the same time so happy the way it came out that forgetting hunger and mealtime, I clicked a few photos to share it here pronto.
You really do not have to do much here.
All you need is some pre boiled enchor and some onions and green chillies.
And some dry masalas.
That's all.

Need :

Raw jackfruit / Kathal / Enchor - boiled with salt and cut into medium pieces
Onions - chopped into big sizes
Garlic - chopped ( optional )
Green chilles - chopped
Turmeric powder
Red chilli powder
Salt - to taste
Sugar - to taste
Cooking oil ( I use mustard oil )
Lemon juice

How to :

In a heavy kadahi/ wok , heat the oil on low heat till smoking hot.

Add the jackfruit and toss on high heat for a minute ... searing it well.

Now add the onions + garlic + green chillies and keep tossing.

Add the turmeric + red chilli powder + salt + sugar.

Keep tossing till everything comes together.

Add a good dose of lemon juice and toss a little more.

Remove from heat and serve hot.

Since we were having it with rice and dal, I did not add any other masala and kept it simple like a bhaja should be.
If you are planning to eat it with rotis or parathas, then you may add garam masala as well as tomatoes too, to bring up the moisture quotient.

And a happy weekend all!!