‘Hannu Thuppa’, Jackfruit Honey & a little about refined white sugar.

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17.11.12

{Due to a recent virus attack I lost a whole bunch of recipe on my blog. I am slowly working on posting them back one by one. I am going to start with the recipes I am getting most requests for. If you remember/want to try one of my earlier recipes which is now not in this blog please write to be at chinmayie.bhat@gmail.com and i’ll try to post it as soon as possible. I am basically just going to re-post the recipe as it was. So some of the content might not be so relevant today but my intention is to get them all back  and I  have over 80 posts to re-blog. Thank you! }

 

'Hannu Thuppa', Jackfruit Honey

 

There was a discussion about sugar in my local food group on Facebook. We were basically talking about the amount of sugar we consume without our own knowledge, about sugar addiction and how bad it really is…

The whole talk got me thinking about Sugar. I was quite surprised to see how some people find it a huge challenge to do that. Don’t get me wrong. I am not saying it’s easy. I have a big sweet tooth myself and I understand how it can be hard to control when the sugar craving hits!

 

Jackfruit

 

I realized that I have never really written much about this issue here in my blog. I have posted several recipes without processed white sugar but never spoken much about why I chose to do that.

 

Jackfruit Honey

 

I don’t really like sounding preachy here. I am not a dietician/nutritionist and have no medical qualification to tell other what or how to eat. I am just sharing my way of eating with you all.

I don’t really need to write again about why refined sugar is not good for you. All you need to do is google it and you’ll find more than you can read. I want to avoid it for the same reasons. What I can write about is how exactly I watch my sugar intake.

 

Jackfruit Honey

 

Let me tell you a little on how I try to cut sugar in my daily diet. 

  • First of all I do not buy/consume the following – breakfast cereals, cookies, cakes, other baked stuff loaded with sugar, packaged sauces, ready made salad dressings, packaged fruit juices, candy bars, chocolates etc and all the other products which have a TON of hidden sugar.
  • I make my own baked goodies (including bread now) by doing which I actually know how much sugar goes into it. I try to experiment baking with natural sweeteners instead of refined white sugar.
  • It helps that I don’t have a habit of eating breakfast cereals or other sweet breakfasts. I always prefer savory hot breakfast. All my meals are home cooked from scratch so I don’t worry about hidden sugar anywhere.
  • I eat more salty, spicy or hot food when I crave something sweet and sometimes it works really well. Probably I only wanted some sought of a strong flavor?
  • I drink mainly water when thirsty. Coffee/tea/other beverages are always enjoyed without sugar. Colas/soft drinks/fruit juices are only very very occasional treats like alchohol.
  • I stock up on dark chocolate for those cocoa cravings so that I don’t go the candy bar route.
  • Fruits are LOVED. There is never a day when my fruit basket is empty. To me fortunately there is no cravings that a super sweet fresh fruit can’t satiate.I am not a fan of dry fruits much but I like to use them while baking. A handful of raisins thrown into cookies and muffins make up for the missing sugar. Date paste/syrup goes very well with cocoa helping me sweeten my chocolate cookies, cakes and muffins without sugar. Once you start experimenting baking without white sugar, possibilities are endless.
  • Frozen bananas are my answer to butter and sugar in most bakes. I have several recipes using frozen bananas and it really works extremely well in making baked goods, sweet and moist.
  • I don’t intend to be on a zero sugar diet unless it’s medically required. Thank god for me that it’s not really an addiction and I can actually control it. I enjoy treating myself to something sweet once in a while. Food is also about happiness and satisfaction.  I keep cutting down on sugar when I feel like I am indulging in it too often. I try to remind myself that I need to eat for the enjoyment rather than addiction.

 

Jackfruit Honey

 

One very important aspect that I want to mention is that while I encourage my family to follow all the about mentioned points, we don’t have any food rules at home. Since I am the one who mainly shops I have some control over what is stocked at home. If I don’t buy packaged cookies and chips, my family can’t pull it out of pantry when hungry. Having easy access to healthier food usually makes you eat better. But at the same time my husband and daughter pick whatever they want/like to eat. My husband has a huge sweet tooth and loves his little piece of desert after most meals. My daughter gets to eat Oreos or candy bars whenever she craves for it. I bake sweet white bread for them because I know they like it better than whole wheat bread and I know I am still better off eating that instead of store bought white bread. I try my best to strike a balance between watching what my family eats and them having the freedom to decide. To me it’s very important that my daughter grows up with a healthy relationship with food. I also believe strongly that i don’t want to fully force my thoughts on her.

 

Jackfruit Honey

 

The more I think about the ‘sugar addiction’ problem in the recent times the more fascinated I get about how fast things have changed here in India. Not too long ago people hardly consumed any sugar! From where I come, which is not even a remote village, 10 to 15 years ago people mainly consumed only jaggery! I remember drinking jaggery sweetened coffee (bellada kaapi), eating jaggery sweetened curries, desserts and sweet puddings (payasa or kheer) sweetened again only with jaggery. Even today my grandmother considers white sugar to be very inferior compared to the full rounded sweetness of jaggery. It’s amazing that people had jaggery in moderation for hundreds of years and within decades white sugar replaced it and doomed us all!

 

Jackfruit Honey

 

Other than the very popular jaggery, wild honey was another common sweetener from my childhood. We were always offered honey (with or without ghee) to dip our Dosas (South Indian Crêpes).

Then there were some exotic sweateners like Jackfruit honey!! Yes! You heard that right… It’s jackfruit honey, made out of only jackfruit and nothing else. Jackfruit honey is called ‘Hannu Thuppa’ in Kannada. ‘Jenu Thuppa’ is honey so ‘Hannu Thuppa’ is jackfruit honey. Jackfruit honey is nothing but the syrup extracted from the water ripe jackfruit is cooked in. It has no sugar or jaggery and is fully natural.

 

Jackfruit Honey

 

In this region every family has at least one jackfruit tree in their backyard. If you are a farmer you are likely to have over dozens of jackfruit frees in your farm which will leave you with hundreds of fruits every year. This delicious fruity golden syrup was made in each and every household and consumed through the year not too long ago. Thanks to refined sugar invading our kitchens, traditional sweeteners like this are completely forgotten.

 

Jackfruit Honey

 

Jackfruit honey is the best replacement for honey in the jackfruit growing belt because it’s almost free! All you need is some over ripe jackfruit and firewood enough to boil it down for a couple of hours. It has an intense jackfruit flavor so if you like jackfruit you will surely love this honey. Make sure you use very very sweet, fully ripe or over ripe jackfruit for best results. This honey’s taste totally depends on the taste of the fruit itself. Store this golden syrup in a bottle and it’ll last you over a year without refrigeration. This is a perfect local answer to very expensive and imported maple syrup. I am sure it can easily replace honey and maple syrup in almost all recipes. Pour it over your pancakes, serve it with dosas, drizzle over toast or sweeten your drinks with it. This natural fruit honey is completely guilt free!

 

Jackfruit Honey

 

My daughter absolutely loved it!  So I am considering making a few bottles of this and stocking for future use. I am looking forward to experimenting baking with this to see how it works instead of honey in recipes. So make yourself a bottle of jackfruit honey if you have access to fresh jackfruit before the season is over and i’ll surely find you new ways to include it in your diet :)

 

'Hannu Thuppa', Jackfruit Honey

 

Ingredients:

  • 4-5 cups of over ripe jackfruit
  • Water

 

This can’t really be called a recipe. It is unbelievably simple to make. De-seed and clean your ripe sweet jackfruit. Place it in a heavy bottomed pot. Fill water till all the fruit is covered. Bring this to a boil and let it simmer for a little over an hour. Let the mixture cool completely (can be done overnight.) Drain all the water out (use your hands to press all the juices out of the fruit) and discard the cooked mushy fruit. Place the jackfruit syrup in another thick bottomed pan and simmer it for 30 to 40 minutes. Keep checking it to make sure it gets to the right ‘honey like’, single thread consistency. It has to be thick but not as hard a jelly. Time taken for this will depend on how sweet your fruit was. Mine took just about 30 minutes.

Let the syrup cool down completely and then store it in a clean dry bottle. This should stay fresh for at least a year without refrigerator.

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2 comments :

  • LEENA BHAT

    Interesting. We have a Chakke hannu tree in our compound here in Bangalore, I think meant for such recipes. Should try this out. Good recipe, if we can call it one, as you say.

  • vjbunny

    Hi
    This is really good recipe that too traditional one… But I grew up in bengaluru and actually I havent eaten over sweet jackfruit will you please tips on how to choose jackfruit while buying.. and cant we use if the fruit is moderately sweet…. Can diabetics take it? My Dh is diabetic…

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