Wednesday, May 23, 2007


I am very new to blogging and knew the least about all the wonderful events that happen here. So, when I accidentally but fortunately came across the mention of jihva event on Bee and Jai's Jugalbandi, I was thrilled. The ingredient made it even more exciting. I have never cooked with Jackfruit nor have I seen my mom do it. The only thing that mom cooked were the seeds. She made a poriyal out of it which tastes awesome. The collection of the seeds is an entire process by itself, our mom asking us to take the seeds out of the store bought jackfruit slices and keep accumulating them in a jar that she would keep on the kitchen countertop. This would go on for days until the jar gets considerable amount of seeds to be cooked. The most fond memory of all is getting a "pottalam" of jackfruit from the streets of kutraalam after a satisfying bath in the nearby falls and gobling them away while walking back home with my cousins. Well.. long gone but still pleasant enough to remember for the rest of the time. Having mentioned that I have no prior experience cooking with Jackfruit, the thought process of what to make for the event lingered on for a while I should say. I also have very bad experiences trying to make burfis, they are never in the right consistency and we always end up eating them as halwas. So, it dawned upon me that two negatives could turn to be a positive - "Jackfruit Burfi" was the answer to try jackfruits and get over my fear of making burfis. Well, the experience was wonderful and for the first time ever, my burfis turned out great. This is my recipe for the JFI event on Jackfruit hosted by Jai and Bee of Jugalbandi.


Jackfruit - 1 cup
Cashews - 1/2 cup
Coconut - 1/4 cup
Milk - 1 cup
Sugar - 1/2 cup
Cardamom - 1 tsp
Almonds (slivered) - 1/4 cup
Ghee - 1/2 cup

  • Pressure cook Jackfruit and cashews with 1/2 cup of milk for a couple of whistles. Remove and let cool.
  • In the mean time, toast the almonds in a little ghee. Also, grease a wide, slightly deep tray with a tsp of ghee.
  • Grind the cooked jackfruit and cashews with coconut into a rough paste.
  • Combine the remaining milk and the paste. Bring it to boil and add cardamom.
  • Keep stirring till they reach a semi solid consistency. At this point add half of the ghee. Reduce heat to medium and keep stirring.
  • When the paste begins forming into a mass and comes off the edges of the pan, add the remaining ghee.
  • Keep stirring until they form a lump and does not stick to the edges.
  • Remove from flame immediately and pour it into the greased plate and spread quickly.
  • After it cools for 30 minutes, cut them into desired shape.
  • Garnish with the toasted almonds and serve.
These burfis can be stored fresh in an airtight container for about 2-3 weeks.

Trivia Facts:

Jackfruit, Botanical name - "Artocarpus Heteroplyllus" is believed to have originated from the Indian rain forests and belongs to the family of mulberries. The tree is enormous in size and can bear fruits till 50 years. The most fruit bearing time is between the ages of 20 and 30. The fruit is considered to be a good source of protein, iron, calcium and vitamins. It is believed that jackfruit tends to be an acquired taste for most people and might not appeal to others who are not exposed to the taste.

For more nutrional information on Jackfruit, visit the nutrition data website

Visit the Purdue horticulture division link for a nice article on Jackfruit and some interesting photographs.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Shahi Tukra & Finding Harmony

Today is a special day for us.. its our marriage anniversary. Truly cannot believe how quickly time flies when you are with someone and still can be YOU. Five years have just fled past us before we could realize. Its amazing. So, today being a memorable day and all... we had to make some sweet. Every year I start with thinking of making something different and somehow after the whole brainstorming, the same kheer appears on the dining table. I very badly needed to change this tradition before my husband brings it up. Also, I wanted it to be thoughtful. The answer was "Shahi Tukra" - The Indian Bread Pudding. This dessert was typically unknown to me until I tasted it recently at an Indian restaurant. My husband loved it.. and if he loves something, then it got to be a real winner. Deciding to make it, I ran through a couple of websites that carried the recipe. They all followed different proportions and different ingredients to make them unique, making it hard for me to choose. So, I took it upon myself to try my own combination of the ingredients. This is the recipe I came up with. This is sure to be one heck of a treat for any special occassion.


Milk - 1 litre
Bread slices - 4-6
Condensed Milk - 2-3 tbsps
Heavy cream - 1/4th of a cup
Sugar - 1/2 cup
Jaggery - 1/2 cup
Ghee - 4 tbsps
Cardamon powder - 2 tsps
Saffron - 1 tsp
Vanilla essence - 1/2 tsp
Raisins - to garnish
Almonds - to garnish
Cashews - to garnish

Ingredients: bread, almonds, cashews and raisins

  • Combine milk, condensed milk, sugar and jaggery. Bring it to boil and reduce heat to medium.
  • Keep simmering until the milk gets thickened. This might take close to 30 minutes.
  • In the mean time, tava roast the bread slices with ghee on both sides. Take care not to burn.
  • Reserve a table spoon of ghee and use the rest to fry the almonds, raisins and cashews.
  • Add cardomon to the milk mixture and let it cool.
  • Layer the bread at the bottom of a flat pan. Pour some milk to immerse it completely.
  • Repeat the process until all the bread and milk are used up.
  • Garnish with the roasted almonds mixture.
  • Cool in refrigerator for atleast 30 minutes before serving.
Bread Pudding ready to be cooled

Trivia Facts:

The origin of Shahi Tukra is believed to be Pakistani. It literally means Royal Piece and sure tastes like one too. A very basic bread pudding seasoned with cardamom and dry fruits of ones own choice. explains Shahi Tukra as "An Indian dessert in the Moghul style, Shahi tukra, is made with bread fried in ghee, dipped in a syrup flavoured with saffron and rosewater, and covered with a creamy sauce in which decorative slices of almond are embedded."