Pazham nurukku – plantain in jaggery syrup.

pazham nurukku, plantains vs banana.

I don’t think I have ever woken up without the aroma of the plantains simmering in palm jaggery when I had Vishu mornings with my parents. There was always nedrapazham in the fruit basket. Then there was always lots of jaggery kind of it was no surprise. Over a period of time, I moved out, new traditions came in and the pazham nuruuku slowly got forgotten about.
Of late I do think, nostalgia creeps up faster coz I know I can be crossing borders that fast. So the pazham nurukku found itself back into my kitchen

Plantains vs banana

Here we are literally talking about two different textures, flavour profiles and starchy feels. The yellow banana that we are commonly used to having as such, in smoothies or as banana bread have a thinner peel and a softer texture. The plantains are much harder, not mushy, with tougher skin. The bananas are certainly sweeter,  taste more sugary. While eating the plantains you are going to taste the starchy elements more. It is this starchy feel that allows it to hold together when you steam or cook them. There is no doubt the plantain is sweet you will have to wait till the skin turns dark and then it becomes honey sweet. Nutritionally, both are excellent potassium sources and loads of healthy carbs. They have high sugar levels too as the starchy will further break down. In a nutshell, this is Plantains vs banana.

Related recipe: plantain banana chips

This year Vishu we are planning to have a bit of the pazham nurukku for breakfast. The children’s actually loved it better than the steamed plantain bananas. This had a halwa kind of sweetness so I guess that went well. You can make this with frozen ripe plantains as well. Comes out a bit softer than the fresh ones. Serve it for dessert after dinner with a dollop of ice cream. Drizzle the leftover syrup on the ice cream. Tastes better than butterscotch.
Enjoy your Vishu and share with us what makes your celebration special. Stay with us on the next post. 

Plantains in jaggery sauce

Pazham nurukku

Plntain banana in jaggery sauce
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine Kerala
Servings 4 people


  • 2 medium sized plantain bananas
  • 1/2 cup jaggery crushed
  • 1/4 cup drinking water
  • 1/4 tsp green cardamom powder
  • 1 tbsp ghee / clarified butter


  • Wash and peel the plantains.
  • Slice it into 1/2 inch thick slices.
  • Add this to a hot frying pan ( nonstick better) and let it sear.
    plantains seared.
  • Add the water to it and set this to a boil.
  • As the water boils, add the crushed jaggery.
    crushed jaggery in the pazham.
  • Let it simmer till the plantain is fork tender and the jaggery coats well on it.
    cooking plantains in jaggery
  • Add the cardamom powder and ghee.
  • Mix well. Now the jaggery coating sticks better on the plantains.
  • Remove the slices into a serving dish and the dessert is ready to serve.
    Plantains in jaggery sauce


Purifying the jaggery

Some types of jaggery have a bit of dirt and sand in them. In this case, melt the jaggery separately with the water and use that with the seared plantains. 

Serving with icecream

This dessert tastes even more delicious when served with ice cream. Serve up a dollop of the vanilla or chocolate ice cream and top it up with these slices. Drizzle the cardamom-infused jaggery syrup ( leftover in the pan) on top of the ice cream. The dessert is instantly upgraded!!
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
5 5 votes

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2 years ago
Rating :

so yummy!! i love it! i ll definitely try it!! 

2 years ago
Rating :

Pazham Nurukku is quite a unique recipe to me. Will try it out. I am sure it tastes great with icecream too. The flavors of cardamom blend well with jaggery.

Mayuri Patel
2 years ago
Rating :

Pazham Nurukku is an interesting way to enjoy plantain with jaggery. With ice cream I will never say no to this halwa like dish. Interestingly, at the Kenyan coast it is common to cook plantain in coconut with sugar and enjoy it as a dessert.

Avin Kohli
2 years ago

Having kids who love the traditional food is just awesome. Lovely recipe. Will try for my kiddos too.

Lata Lala
2 years ago
Rating :

Pazham Nurukku is certainly a unique recipe that uses very less oil/ ghee/ butter. I am sure it tastes great with grated coocnut. I loved the addition of jaggery here. Super yummy.

2 years ago
Rating :

This is one of my favorite snacks when I was a kid even now. This brings nostalgic memories.

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