Jackfruit tinga

Ingredients

  • 4 medium sweet potatoes
  • 3 large tomatoes
  • 2 heaped tsp vegan chipotle paste, plus extra to taste
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1tsp dried oregano
  • 2tsp soft brown sugar
  • 2tsp vegan cider vinegar
  • 1tsp cumin powder
  • 1tbsp olive oil
  • 1 heaped tsp tomato purée
  • 400g cooked batched jackfruit (see recipe below)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • hot sauce or lime wedges, to serve

For the toppings (optional)

  • guacamole
  • cashew sour cream or shop-bought vegan soya-free sour cream
  • Mexican ‘slawromaine lettuce leaves
  • fresh coriander leaves

Batched jackfruit

  • 3tbsp olive oil or neutral cooking oil
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 6 x 565g or 400g tins of young green jackfruit in brine or water, drained (the drained weight of jackfruit from a 565g or 400g tin is usually the same – 220g)
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 500ml hot vegan vegetable stock

Method

Heat the oven to 180C/350F/ Gas 4. Put the sweet potatoes on a baking tray and bake in the oven for 45 minutes.

While the potatoes are cooking, make the jackfruit tinga. Cook the tomatoes in a dry pan over a high heat for around 8-10 minutes, turning frequently, until blackened and beginning to soften. Leave the tomatoes to cool slightly, then transfer to a food processor or blender with the chipotle paste, garlic, oregano, sugar, vinegar and cumin. Blitz to form a rough purée.

Heat the oil in a large pan, add the tomato purée and cook for a couple of minutes over a medium-low heat, then add in the blitzed tomatoes, the jackfruit, bay leaf and plenty of pepper. Pour in 200ml of hot water, bring to a simmer and cook for around 20 minutes, stirring often and topping up with more hot water if the mixture becomes dry.

Taste the tinga – it should be spicy, smoky and tart. Add more chipotle paste and salt or pepper, if needed. Remove the bay leaf.

Remove the sweet potatoes from the oven and serve each with a generous dollop of tinga. There should be enough for you to pile it high. Add additional toppings at the table as desired.

For the batched jackfruit (makes 1KG)

Heat the oil in a large frying pan, add the onions and fry gently over a medium-low heat for around 8 minutes, until translucent.

Meanwhile, trim away the hard, woody core from each chunk of jackfruit and discard, leaving only the softer flesh. Roughly shred the flesh, using your hands. Rinse well under cold running water, then tip onto a clean tea towel and pat dry.

Add the crushed garlic to the onions and cook for a further 2 minutes. Turn up the heat to medium and add the shredded jackfruit. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until the jackfruit and onions begin to brown. (Fish out any jelly-like seeds or hard bits of core that may emerge as the flesh breaks down.) Add the stock and bring to a simmer, then cook for around 10 minutes, until the stock has almost evaporated.

When the pan is almost dry, remove from the heat and allow the jackfruit to cool slightly, then roughly mash with a potato masher to further shred the flesh. Use immediately or divide into portions and freeze.