Kathal tikka

I remember having kathal years ago as it has a texture which can absorb flavours well and is a kind of meat substitute in India. I felt like trying out a tikka marinade and this came out beautifully. In English kathal is jackfruit and it is available in Asian shops. I used a can mainly because we had a can at home and I was too lazy to search the streets for fresh jackfruit. Apparently it’s easily available fresh at Chinese supermarkets.


700g jackfruit

2 tbsps soya yogurt

1.5 tsps gram flour

4 garlic cloves

1.5 inch ginger

3 green chillies (whole, slit through the middle) – If you’re ok with heat, chilli is really to your own taste.

1 large tomato

1.5 tbsp dessicated coconut

1 tsp cumin

1 tsp mustard seeds

0.5 tsp coriander seeds

1 tbsp black sesame seeds

1 tsp black peppercorn

1 black cardamom

1 inch cinnamon

2 bay leaves

salt (I suggest 0.5 teaspoon but your choice)

a pinch of nutmeg

1 tbsp sunflower or coconut oil

a splash of lemon juice


1. In a pan fry the cumin, mustard seeds, coriander seeds, black sesame seeds, bay leaves, peppercorns, green chillies, cardamom and cinnamon for about 1 minute. You will hear popping and it’ll be super aromatic. Don’t burn it. Add desiccated coconut and stir until it goes brown. It browns very quickly so make sure it isn’t burned. Leave to cool for a few minutes.

2. In a blender add your tomato, garlic, yoghurt, ginger, salt, nutmeg and gram flour. You’ll have to chop up the tomato, garlic and ginger so that it blends properly. Add the roasted spice mix. Make it into a fine paste

3. Coat your jackfruit and leave to marinade for 1 hour.

4. For for best results ideally this should be skewered and barbecued. If the weather is crap throw it in the oven at 180 degrees for 30 minutes on the middle shelf. Finish it off on the top shelf under the grill for an additional 10 minutes  to get the blackened tikka bits.

5. Finish it off with a splash of lemon juice. Goes gorgeously with nan.

The photo below is from the oven. Still managed to be brilliant without the BBQ.