Today is Onam in Kerala. Onam is a harvest festival, which is a major festival celebrated in Kerala. It is one of the rarest festivals, which is celebrated by the entire state of Kerala people. The rich cultural heritage of Kerala comes out in its best form and spirit during the festival.
We never celebrated onam, as you all might know by now that I was born in Kerala, but brought up completely in Andhra pradesh because of my dad’s job. We used to go to Kerala during summer vacations and I never got a chance to celebrate onam.
My mom told us what they used to do during onam like the “pookalam”- floral carpet, ona sadhya- special feast lunch served on a banana leaf, games like tug of war, boat race, women’s dance performed in circle around a lamp and many more such things during onam.I used to dream about all of them.
Though we were not in Kerala to enjoy all these, my mom made sure to make sadhya for us. Sadhya includes avial( mixed vegetables in coconut gravy), sambhar, parippu curry, Olan(a curry using ash gourd and black beans), Kaalan ( a gravy of raw banana and yam), Cabbage thoran, lemon Pickle, Mango pickle, Papad and the dessert parippu payasam, ethakka payasam. I wonder how my mom alone can prepare these many dishes.
After marriage as my husband is a big foodie, I started learning new dishes for him and so slowly for onam I used to make small sadhya with 2- 3 dishes and for every onam I used to increase my dishes. Once for onam I called my friends and prepared a lavish feast, which I never thought I could make. My daughter loves to make floral carpet and so the floral carpet and a sadhya is a must in my house for onam.
This time for onam I made jackfruit chips to go along with the sadhya. Usually banana chips are served, but I thought of making these jackfruit chips as we got some frozen raw jackfruit from an indian store.
We usually buy the readymade jackfruit chips, but the taste of homemade chips is completely different. Jackfruits are abundant in Kerala. Almost all the houses have this jackfruit tree. These are easy to fry, but the real task goes in cleaning and cutting. My mom always prepares these chips, whenever raw jackfruit is there at home. We also prepare mashed jackfruit in coconut using raw jackfruit. Hope you all will like this.
- Raw Jackfruit (Mature Unripe fruit)- 1 no
- Salt- as required
- Turmeric Powder- 1 tsp
- Oil- for deep frying
- Cut the jackfruit and remove the carpels. Cut these carpels into thin long strips.
- Mix turmeric powder to these thin strips of jackfruit and leave this for 10 minutes.
- Meanwhile heat oil for deep frying. Fry the jackfruit strips on low flame. In a small bowl, mix little water and required amount of salt.
- Add this salt water to the frying oil, so that the jackfruit strips will absorb salt.Occasionally stir in between, till it becomes crisp.
- Once, when they turn crisp remove from oil on to a kitchen towel. When it is completely cool, store in airtight containers and enjoy along with your evening tea…..