Frozen langka (jackfruit) served sprinkled with brandy or cognac. It doesnâ€™t get any easier and it tastes surprisingly good. Itâ€™s langka season in Luzon big time, with mammoth fruit coming off of the trees and reaching the peak of ripeness just about now. As with most tropical fruits, when it rains, it pours, and the volume is often something that overwhelms. But I donâ€™t generally buy bits of a fruit. So the last time I drove by the roadside stands in Batangas (NOT Tagaytay, where you get seriously fleeced), I bargained for a massive langka that was about 3 days from full ripeness. Back home, it was opened when ripe and the immediate question is, what the heck are we going to do with all of this fruit??? One the easiest ways to preserve it but still have a hint of freshness is to bottle it with sugared water and store it in the fridge for up to several weeks. You can add this to halo-halo, turon, ginataan, etc.
The other way to keep so much langka is to freeze it. Serve it cold or just slightly thawing but if you want to give it that extra edge, drizzle it with brandy. One of Marketmanila’s regular readers, Apicio, mentioned several times that one of his childhood favorites was fried bananas served with sugar and drizzled with rhum. Then a few weeks ago we were at a friendâ€™s home and for dessert they served frozen langka with brandyâ€¦ I tried this at home and really liked the results. The combination of intense sometimes overwhelming flavor of langka, tempered by the frozen state of the fruit, combined with the strong flavor of brandy is really a pleasant surprise. Try it the next time you have an abundance of langka fruit!