The festival has an exhibition-cum-sale of various types of jackfruits, along with food stalls that presents the myriad ways the jackfruit can be cooked.

Jackfruit is a fruit chakka is an emotion This Kerala festival shows you whySreekesh Raveendran Nair
news Food festival Saturday, July 01, 2017 - 19:26

Did you know that there are over a 100 ways to eat the delicious and often under appreciated jackfruit? 

The Ananthapuri Chakka Mahotsavam, a ten-day festival kicked off on Friday at the Suryakanthi exhibition ground in Thiruvananathapuram. The festival is celebrating this versatile fruit with scores of mouthwatering dishes made from ‘chakka’, Malayalam for jackfruit. 

Organised by the Jackfruit Promotion Council, the College of Agricuture at Vellayani and many other organisations with the support of the Agriculture Department, the festival has an exhibition-cum-sale of various types of jackfruits, along with food stalls that presents the myriad ways the jackfruit can be cooked. 

Golden fried ‘unniyappams’ made of jackfruit mixed with ride powder and melted jaggery. Crisp from outside and soft from outside, this hot scrumptious snack is perfect company with your tea. 

The ‘chakka puttu’ is a jackfruit steam cake. Puttu, the breakfast staple of Kerala usually prepared with rice flour and coconut is being prepared with a twist by adding jackfruit to the ingredients. 

Perfectly soft, fluffy and lightly sweet, the ‘chakka puttu’ is a must-try. 

The ‘kumpil appam’ or the jackfruit appam is another take on the traditional breakfast dish of Kerala. Made by steaming a batter mix of jackfruit, melted jaggery and rice powder wrapped in ‘therali’ leaf, these sweet bites are perfect for eating at any time the mood strikes. 

The crispy fried jackfruit ‘pori’ is cooked by mixing gram flour and jackfruit. Sinfully deep fried these golden crispy savoury delights are hard to resist.

If sweet snacks are not your choice of poison, you can dig into a dish of jackfruit ‘puzhuku’ made with  jackfruit, tamarind, pepper and jackfruit seeds.

The jackfruit payasam was especially a crowd-pleaser with people turning up for more than one helping. 

The other delectable goodies to try at the 10-day fete are jackfruit pazham pori, jackfruit vada, avalosepodi, chammanthi, jackfruit pickle and haluva. You can even get your hands on jackfruit cookies, cupcakes and ice-cream.  

The other attraction at the festival is the elaborate jackfruit sadhya, a traditional Kerala meal of rice served with varieties of curry and dessert, The sadhya priced at Rs 150 will be served every afternoon of the festival until July 9. The jackfruit sadhya will have a spread of 19 dishes including chakka sambar, chakkakuru (jackfruit seeds) thoran, chakka mullu, two types of chakka payasam. 

Besides the food-stalls there are heaps of jackfruits for sale. Visitors get a chance to taste the fruit before deciding to buy. Jackfruit saplings from within and outside the state are up for sale as well.

Adding to the vibrancy of the festival, there is also going to be jackfruit eating contests, seminar, photography, poster and painting competitions and exhibitions. 

(All photos by Sreekesh Raveendran Nair)