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Curious about jackfruit but rather let someone else do the cutting and cooking? Several Pittsburgh restaurants have “young” jackfruit on the menu, in various preparations. Here’s a taste:
Bahama Breeze (6100 Robinson Center Dr., Robinson) — The Caribbean-inspired chain restaurant features Jackfruit Tacos ($9.79). Flour tortillas are filled with guava barbecue sauce-marinated jackfruit, jicama-mango slaw, corn and black bean salsa, and is finished with tortilla strips and Sriracha aioli ($9.79).
Onion Maiden (639 East Warrington Ave., Allentown) — This vegan pop-up-turned punk-themed Asian-fusion restaurant features Coffins ($11) on its menu, which is a scallion pancake taco filled with five-spice jackfruit and enoki mushroom, and topped with jalapenos, cilantro, red cabbage and cucumber.
Penn Brewery (800 Vinial St., North Side) — You can order Memphis-style barbecue jackfruit at this German restaurant and brewery either in sliders with pickles and house slaw ($9 for 3) or on a flatbread with garlic-parmesan butter, cheddar/jack cheese and red onion ($9).
Harris Grill (747 Ellsworth Ave. Shadyside; 245 Fourth Ave., Downtown; 123 Shiloh St., Mt. Washington) — The meaty jackfruit tacos at the venerable watering hole are done sofrito style, in a sauce made with garlic, onion and peppers. Served in flour tortillas, they’re topped with pickled red onion and chipotle aoili. Available in lunch (2 tacos, $9.63) and dinner (3 tacos, $14.97) portions.
Pirata (274 Forbes Ave., Downtown) — Island flavors rule at this Caribbean restaurant and rum bar off Market Square. Its gourmet jackfruit tacos ($13) are made with smoked jackfruit tucked inside a beet-corn tortilla and topped with pea shoots, pickled strawberries and salsa borracha, a “drunken” salsa made with orange juice and tequila.
Condado Tacos (971 Liberty Ave., Downtown) — Barbecue-pulled jackfruit is listed among the 10 protein options for the Columbus, Ohio,-based chain’s “build your own” tacos ($3), and also is the star of the vegetarian Mantis that combines jackfruit with onions, tomato, Chihuahua cheese and mango habanero sauce ($4).
Mindful Brewing Co. (3759 Library Road, Castle Shannon) — Jackfruit is one of three optional toppings for the brewery’s Nachos Grande ($7), which pairs fresh corn tortilla chips topped with queso blanco with tomatoes, jalapenos, onions, sour cream and salsa,
Square Cafe (1137 S. Braddock Ave., Regent Square) — The “Jerky Jack Jerk” sandwich is among the many veg, vegan and gluten-free options at this neighborhood cafe. It’s crafted with jackfruit, lettuce and pickles on grilled ciabatta ($10).