Govinda - Jack's Fruit-Flesh (sounds better in German)
Company Name: Govinda Where to Buy It: Denn's, Alnatura and govinda-natur.de/
Main Ingredient: Jackfruit Rating: 5/5 Main Issue: None
I loved this product!
The moment I picked this product up I was excited to try it. But I waited. And waited. Until the right day came and this day was the perfect day.
The cold air pushes even the bravest inside, a bit of sun gleams off the hood of the cars and the far off church bells call out to me, even now. This was the day, I was going to make something that I had been trying my very best to contemplate how I would cook it but didn't know how to, without of course the meat. I am speaking of course, of "Beef" pot pie.
I was never crazy about Beef pot pies when I used to eat meat, in fact there was only certain conditions that had to be met before I would truly enjoy them, cold, sunny and a burning desire in me to make pastry (this rarely happens). So you may wonder, why I became so excited to make them on this day? All I can say is that when I can't figure something out, it becomes an itch that picks at my brain, a torment that I can only find relief from when I have figured it out, and today was the day that I was going to figure it out.
I was also excited because it was the first product from Govinda's line of products that I was going to try and I was hooked by the name, as character Howard Hesse's life changing book "Siddhartha" and in addition to that a name of a Hindu God....Which I have to admit I also like. Govinda started in 1988 and there is so much to love about this company that I couldn't even really begin to cover it, but here's a link that will help you scratch the surface of this wonderful company. govinda-natur.de/en/about-us/
But before I get too far ahead of myself. If you are unsure what Jackfruit is or why I don't separate Jack and Fruit, it's because Jackfruit is a particular type of fruit that is used a lot in India and some Asian countries. It can grow to be quite large, contains good amounts of fiber and can have a "meaty" texture, something similar to braised beef. I can say that this is the second time I have tried Jackfruit and Govinda's did a particularly suburb job.
Jackfruit is a fruit (obviously), so it can be a bit sweet when picked too ripe but that wasn't a problem with Govinda's product, the sweetness blended well with the fantastic spice package that is included ( Peppers, salt, tomato crisps, onion, celery, black pepper). When out of the box, the spice mix is separate from the Jackfruit and I found this to be a great concept as it give an increase in the range of what you can do with it and anytime a product can used for a vast variety of recipes, I am a happy man.
When out of the packaging the product looks like slightly colored beef cubes....sort of....
And then you take these cubes and marinate it in the spices provided and a touch of oil for 5 to 15 minutes. I left mine for the full 15 minutes, as I really wanted the flavors to soak into the Jackfruit.
After this, simply fry on medium for 3 or 4 minutes until the product is cooked and it becomes the color that you want. Simple, no fuss and no worries. The product holds together and is looks great.
The taste is incredible delicious. The pepper powder adds of bit of spice (not spicy just a bit of warmth) and works incredible well with the Jackfruit. I fried the Jackfruit for the full 4 minutes and the spice mix created a nice crust on the outside of the product. The texture was brilliant, soft and a bit stringy, which when making a "beef" pie is perfect. So if you happen to be lucky enough to see this product on shelf in your local organic store or online really do yourself a big favor and buy it, buy many (no I am not employed there) you won't be disappointed.
But now can I do this product justice and create "Jackfruit Pot Pies"?
First, as anytime I cook. I made some Tea and turned on my favorite Josh Ritter album.
I then started cooking, I made a simply mushroom stock, made some pastry and started simmering the veggies that I was going to use. In this case, Carrots finely diced, Chestnuts, Leek, Mushroom, Peas and of course Govinda's Jackfruit. After simmering, cooking and frying, I thickened it with a Roux and Bob's your uncle.
But now comes the trick, the pastry. I tossed together the flour and the margarine and a touch of cold water, knead a minute and place in the fridge and then put it all together....and bake.
(see tomorrow for the full recipe)