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Showing posts with label PICKLES. Show all posts
Showing posts with label PICKLES. Show all posts

Monday, April 21, 2014


This year when I saw raw mangoes arrive in the market I decided to pickle them. Yo(my husband is very fond of pickles) and nowadays the pickles we buy in the market have a pungent flavor to them, no matter which brand you buy, eventually you wear off the brands as you start feeling this. So, I thought better make them at home.  I was not sure whether I should make Avakkai(the south Indian style) mango pickle or the Gujarati style Mango pickle so I asked all my Facebook friends and somehow got tempted to make the Methi Rai Kuria Mango Pickle. I absolutely adore the Mango pickles that my Gujarati neighbor used to make in big porcelain pickle jars during the summer months back in India. Not only would the home made ones have a lot of Masala, but the mangoes would also be quite soft unlike the ones we buy from the shop.

I read on some websites that this pickle is made either with methi na kuria (crushed fenugreek seeds) or rai na kuria (split mustard seeds). I decided to add both because I like the masala more than the mango itself.

If I can make these at home anyone can make it…It’s incredibly easy to make.  The main preparation is the ingredients, once everything is ready, it is only assembly.


Cut Mango Pieces – 1 ½ kilo / Approximately 10 teacups of cut raw mangoes.
Salt – 2 teacups
Broken Yellow Mustard ground coarsely – 1 cup
Methi (Whole)  ground coarsely – ¼ cup
Kashmiri Chilly powder – 1 cup
Asafetida – 2 tbsp
Oil – 41/2 cups

Before you start the process of assembly you need to take the following precautions.

·         Work in an open space with the windows open.

·         Don’t sit under the ceiling fan lest the masala blows into your eyes and nose.

·         Wear plastic disposable gloves, because some people have sensitive hands and they may find their hands burning with the chilly powder for a long time.

First wash the mangoes, wipe them and then cut them in big chunks, I made slightly smaller chunks. After you cut don’t wash them, just let them dry out on a newspaper in the sun for a while. Meanwhile make your other ingredients ready.

Lightly Roast the whole fenugreek seeds and when cool, crush them coarsely as shown in the picture.

Lightly Roast the Broken Yellow Mustard seeds, this is readily available in the market. No need to grind this, you can use it as it is.

Heat the oil lightly till it is warm (not up to the smoking point) and let it cool. This process is to remove the raw smell of the oil. This step maybe avoided in the readymade pickles available in the market hence the pickles start to give a pungent odor.


As you can see in the picture I kept all my ingredients ready.

I mixed the salt, red chilly powder, crushed fenugreek seeds, the roasted broken yellow mustard seeds and asafetida together in a big open plate, After which I added the cut mango chunks.

Ensure everything coats well.
Finally add in the Oil and give it a good mix.
You can mix using a spatula or your hand.
Once you feel everything is mixed well, slowly, gently take spoonfuls and drop into a sterilized porcelain or glass jar/bottle. Every day keep the jar in the sun for 2-3 hours.

The pickling process starts as the Mangoes start to marinate in the masala.

Every day in the morning open the jar and with a long dry spoon, give it a good stir.

In about 10-15 days the pickle is ready for you’ll to eat. 

I have not used any preservative. The oil and salt are natural preservatives and will help preserve the pickle.

This pickle can be stored for a year but you have to be careful not to use a wet spoon while you scoop out small portions for your immediate everyday servings.

Store this in a cool dry place. Enjoy this lovely condiment with your food.


·         Preferably use Kashmiri chilly powder as it imparts a lovely red color to the pickle.

·         This pickle can also be made with ½ cup rai na kuria (split mustard seeds) only.

·         This pickle can also be made with ½ cup methi na kuria (crushed fenugreek seeds) only.

·         If you wish, you can use drained baby mangoes in brine, in which case, you should reduce the quantity of salt in this recipe.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


I had bought a kilo of tomatoes accidentally not knowing that there was huge bag of tomatoes lying in my fridge already. Since I had so many tomatoes and I knew that they surely would spoil. I sorted them and picked out the red ripe tomatoes and decided to make this awesome Thokku. (Read all about thokku in this link). Thakkali thokku tastes awesome with curd rice, bread, dosas, chappatis or absolutely anything
The cooking of the tomatoes takes time but the thokku has a shelf life of weeks and you can enjoy it everyday. I have used to 10-12 tomatoes which gives me about 300gms of thokku. If you want more use more tomatoes.

Tomato – 10 - 12
Tamarind paste – 1 tbsp
Fenugreek powder – 1 tsp
Asafoetida - a pinch
Red chilly powder – 1½ tbsp
Mustard seeds for seasoning – 2 tsps
Sesame (Til) oil – 8-10 tbsps
Wash and wipe the tomatoes. Chop them and grind them in a blender along with 1 tablespoon of the tamarind paste. Blend into a puree.
Now in a wok heat 8-10 tablespoons of oil, Add in the mustard seeds and when it crackles, add in the fenugreek powder, red chilly powder, asafetida(referred to as masala hereon) and salt and fry for a few seconds. Be careful and don’t let it get black.
Now, add the Tomato puree and cook until the water evaporates. Check for salt. If required you can add some more at this point.
Cook covered as the water in the tomato starts to splutter.
Cook until you see the tomato puree starts to leave the sides of the pan and the oil starts separating from the mixture.
This indicates that the thokku is done. Turn off the heat and let the thokku come to room temperature, after which you can store it in an air tight container and enjoy as a condiment with any of the dishes mentioned above.
Yo(my husband) was eating it with bread and saying that it tastes great and my mom has it with her curd rice. You can even add some to plain hot rice, mix well, add some oil if you want and eat it plain with papad. "Thokkun chaadam"(Thokku rice)
This can be stored in the refrigerator for many weeks like any other pickle.

(Above picture - A closer look at the tomato thokku)
• I had readymade fenugreek powder, for those who don’t have it. Dry roast a tablespoon of fenugreek seeds and powder it to use in the thokku. Make it fresh, it tastes better.

• Once the mustard splutters, the temperature of the oil will be very high, so reduce the flame of the gas to sim and add in the powders and when you see them froth just wait for about 10-12 seconds, be careful don’t let the masala get black. Frying the masala imparts great taste to the thokku. If you are not confident, then you can add the masalas later to the puree.
• For those who like garlic, you can add 4-5 pods of garlic (4-5 for Indian garlic which is small in size), if using the bigger sized ones that we get abroad, make it half of the said quantity. Fry the garlic well after the mustard splutters and then add in the masala. If you want you can use garlic paste as well, but ensure to fry it well else the thokku won’t be aromatic.

• You can add chinna vengayam(madras vengayam/shallots/ mini onions), but always fry them once the mustard splutters.

• My mom usually adds green chillies . If you are using green chillies reduce the amount of red chilly powder, else your thokku will be very spicy.

• My grandmom used to add a bit of ginger. When you are adding ginger, make a paste and fry well after the mustard splutters.

You can try any variation that you desire and enjoy this awesome finger licking thokku.

Friday, July 30, 2010


All tamilians know what a thokku is and what is it’s significance in their lives. Thokku is halfway between a thogayal and a pickle. It has a longer shelf life like a pickle and there is no coconut used in the recipe.
Just like in a thogayal/thuvayal, chopped/grated vegetables are blended to a paste with spices, but without adding water. The water content in the vegetables are also reduced by slow cooking. This helps in preserving the thokku and giving it a longer shelf life. The thokku can be kept out of the refrigerator for a week after it is made and after that for over a month in the refrigerator.
Thokku can be used as a dip, spread, or a pickle. You can eat it with Bread, Chappatis, dosa, upma and curd rice or eat it mixed with hot rice and ghee.
Almost all vegetables without too much water content can be turned into Thokkus. Experiment with exotic vegetables as long as you remain true to the spirit of the recipe.
When using sour stuff as the base, you need not add tamarind.
To make your thokku have a longer shelf life:
  • Use fresh vegetables.
  • Wash and completely dry vegetables, bottles and spoons.
  • Never use a wet spoon or your bare hands to touch the thokku. Even a tiny bit of water can spoil it.
  • Aluminum, plastic or brass vessels react with the acid in thokku and should be avoided. Use glass / stainless steel / porcelain jars.
  • Salt always has moisture in it. So dry roast it / dry it in sun for a day before using it.
  • Refrigerate thokku to make them last much longer.
  • Have a layer of oil over thokku to seal the surface.
  • Mix in a pinch of preservatives like sodium benzoate / citric acid to make your thokku last longer.

Here is a tasty and refreshing recipe of The Mint leaves Thokku

Pudina Leaves – 1 bunch
Tamarind Paste – 1 tsp
Gingelly Oil / Any edible vegetable oil -  5 tbsps
Udad dal – 1 tsp
Fenugreek seeds – ¼ tsp
Red Chilly - 4
Asafoetida – ½ tsp
Mustard – 1 tsp
Salt as per taste
Dry roast the Udad, Red chillies, Fenugreek seeds and grind into a fine powder. Keep aside.
Wash the pudinah leaves well and fry in 2 tsps oil till it is reduced, dry and changed its color. Cool and grind it coarse in a mixie.
Heat the remaining oil in a pan, add the mustard seeds and when it begins to crackle, add in the ground powders and fry for half a minute, it shouldn’t become black, then add the tamarind paste and cook for a minute, after this add the coarsely ground mint leaves, and salt as per taste. Mix it all well. Keep stirring continuously till the water evaporates and it becomes one uniform mixture. After a while you will see the oil separates from the mixture and floats on top. This is the indication that it is done. Put off the gas and let it cool and enjoy it as a dip, spread or a pickle.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


I would like to send this to Ruth’s Bookmarked recipes event


I would like to share this recipe that I found on Tarla Dalal’s website. I always thought that making pickles involves a very detailed recipe until I stumbled upon this recipe for Instant Chunda.


1 cup (140 gms) raw mangoes, grated
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 tsp turmeric powder
1 1/2 cups (300 gms) sugar
1 tbsp chilly powder
1 tsp roasted cumin seeds, crushed
combine the grated mangoes, salt and turmeric powder and leave aside for 15 minutes.
Add the sugar little by little (2 tbsps at a time) to the mango mixture and stir continuously using a spoon or a whisk till all the sugar is nearly dissolved. the entire process will take about 30 to 35 minutes.
Heat a pan, add the mango and sugar mixture and go on stirring over a very slow flame till the sugar has dissolved completely and small bubbles appear on the surface of the mixture (approx. 3 to 4 minutes).
Remove from the flame and let the mixture cool completely.
Add the chilly powder and cumin seeds and store in a sterilized glass jar.

I love to eat Chunda or Chundo as it called in Gujarat with Theplas (click on the link to see the recipe).You can see juicy tangy spicy sweet Chundo on top of the Thepla in the picture.

Preparation time: 50 minutes
Cooking time: 5 minutes
Makes : 1 ¼ cups
Storage: Upto 1 year (in a cool dry place)

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

AMLA/AVLA PICKLE (Instant Gooseberries Pickles)

AMLA/AVLA PICKLE (Instant Gooseberries Pickles)
Here is another instant pickle which is also an instant hit. Whenever you see Gooseberries available in the market, you can buy them and pickle them. Gooseberries are very high in Vitamin C.

Gooseberries – 10-12 medium sized
Turmeric powder – 2 tsps
Red Chilly powder - 2 tablespoon
Mustard seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Fenugreek seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Asafoetida (Hing powder) - 1 teaspoon
Salt to taste
Oil – 2-3 tbsps
Wash the gooseberries in a colander. Cook the gooseberries in a pressure cooker with some turmeric for upto 3 whistles. Once the gooseberries are cooked cut them and remove the seed and chop into small pieces or you can chop them into slivers or even mash them into a paste or grate them, this is totally up to you. In my recipe here I have chopped the boiled gooseberries into small pieces. Once done, keep aside.
In a Kadhai(wok), roast the mustard and fenugreek seeds, the fenugreek seeds acts as a preservative. Powder this in a mixie, make a fine powder.
In the same kadhai, Take 2-3 tbsps of any cooking oil. Add the mustard seeds and wait till it pops. Keep the gas on a very low flame or better still put off the flame else the masala will turn black. Now add the red chilly powder and the ground mustard and fenugreek powders and Asafoetida, let it fry. Now add the boiled and chopped gooseberries and mix well with the masala. Add salt to taste and sauté for a few minutes.
Your Instant Gooseberry pickle is ready to be enjoyed with your lunch or dinner or snacks as you may please.
Tip : More oil is required to preserve this pickle. This pickle does'nt have a very long shelf life. Can stay for 3-4 days outside and later for another week in the refrigerator.

Sunday, August 12, 2007


MAANGA CURRY (Instant Mango Pickles) This is an instant pickle. This is one instant pickle which is so tasty that too without waiting like we have to wait for other pickles to mature and get totally marinated and ready. It can be prepared only in the mango season. Especially when you start seeing fresh raw mangoes enter the markets. The young green mango will be tender, sour and will get seasoned very easily and make the best instant pickles.

Green mango - 1 medium
Red Chilly powder - 2 tablespoon
Mustard seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Fenugreek seeds - 1/2 teaspoon
Asafoetida (Hing powder) - 1 teaspoon

Salt to taste
Oil – 2-3 tbsps
Cut the mango into small pieces. In a Kadhai, roast the mustard and fenugreek seeds, the fenugreek seeds acts as a preservative. Powder this in a mixie, make a fine powder.

In the same kadhai, Take 2-3 tbsps of any cooking oil. Add the mustad seeds and wait till it pops. Keep the gas on a very low flame or better still put off the flame else the masala will turn black. Now add the red chilly powder and the ground mustard and fenugreek powders and Asafoetida, let it fry. Now add the mangoes and mix well with the masala. Add salt to taste and sauté for a few minutes.

Your Maanga Curry is ready to be savoured with your lunch or dinner or snacks as you may please.

Tip : More oil is required to preserve this pickle. This pickle does'nt have a very long shelf life. Can stay for 3-4 days outside and later for another week in the refrigerator.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005


The Vadu Maanga also known as Maavadu in some households is usually prepared at the beginning of the raw mango season. The young baby mango is plucked and pickled as a whole without chopping it. Since the mango is still young it is very tender and once soaked in the spices, entirely absorbs it and starts leaving its own sour liquids into the spices, all this gets suffused and thus we get our famous south Indian pickle the vadu maanga, which tastes divine with curd rice and the water that oozes out of the mango over a period of time mixed with the spices taste so heavenly that u can mix it with rice and some oil and just have it, its absolutely mouth-watering. This pickle is literally oil free except for the 1tbsp oil, if you want you can avoid adding the oil completely.


Young Green mangoes – 20-25 pieces.
Mustard seeds - 8 tsp
Red chillies – 8-10 (please use chilly as per spice required)
Turmeric powder - 1 tsp
Salt - 1/2 cup
1 tbsp of cooking oil.


Wash the young green mangoes, pat dry. Take a porcelain or glass pickle jar or Oorghai Bharani. Put the mangoes in it and a handful of crystalline salt. Keep doing this in layers. One layer of mangoes topped with salt and so on and so forth. Keep the pickle jar closed and shake it twice a day, so that the salt and mangoes mix well. After 2-3 days you will see that the mangoes have shrunk in size or the salt has acted upon the mangoes and made it tender.

Dry Roast the mustard seeds, take a little cooking oil and roast the red chillies till it becomes plump. This removes the raw smell of the red chillies and also gives it a better color. Now grind the mustard seeds, crystalline salt, red chillies and turmeric powder into a thick paste. Mix this paste with the mangoes. Remove from jar and put in an open vessel so that the paste can be thoroughly mixed with the mangoes. Now transfer the mangoes with the masala mixed into the pickle jar. Heat one tbsp oil and allow to cool. Pour this oil on top and close the lid.

For the next 2-3 days shake the mangoes well once every day. Store in air tight containers in refrigerator. This will last for about one year.

Tip: The use of crystalline salt (kallu uppu) is advised as iodized salt darkens the pickle.

Saturday, March 5, 2005



1 kg raw firm mangoes, chopped in chunks
200 gms crushed mustard seeds
200 gms fenugreek seeds
Salt as per taste (approx 150 gms)
2 tbsp turmeric
1/4 cup Red chilly (as per taste)
2 cups mustard oil


Place mango chunks in a jar and put some salt and 1/2 of the turmeric in it. Shake the jar so the pieces are evenly coated. Keep aside.
Shake this jar in a pendulum motion every 7-8 hours, for 2 days.
On the second day, soak methi separately, keep it overnight.
On third day, drain water from methi.
Empty the mangoes into non-iron colander and allow the water to drain for 15-20 minutes, Retain the drained water. In this water, put the soaked Methi seeds for about 2 hours so that the essence of the mango enters the fenugreek seeds, rendering it a sour and salty taste. Meanwhile Pat dry the mango chunks, and dry in sun for 4-5 hours on a towel. Now, drain the methi and dry them completely with the towel.
Mix all the ingredients except the mango chunks
Heat oil very well till smoky. Let it cool. In half the oil, add the mixed ingredients and then add mango chunks Mix it well, so all chunks are coated with the masala.
Transfer to a clean jar and press down lightly. Pour remaining oil on top, oil should cover the pickle.
Allow to marinate for 10 days before using.
Take out in small quantities for use in a small glass jar. The main jar should always have a layer of oil floating on top. Add more oil if required, but remember the oil should be first heated and then cooled.

Shelf-life: More than a year

Thursday, April 1, 2004


Lime pickle
Fresh lime (large size, thin skin, ripe) – 6
Red Chilly powder – 4 tbsps (preferably Kutilal or coarsely powdered chilly powder)
Salt – 4 tbsps
Asafoetida – ½ tsp
Sesame Oil – ¼ cup
Mustard seeds – 1tsp

Take 6 large Fresh lime, which have think skin and are totally yellow indicating that they are ripe. Cut them into medium pieces or ¼ pieces. (Preseve the juice while cutting).

Add Salt, Red chilly powder and the Asafoetida and mix well.

On the second day add 1/4 cup of sesame oil and leave it aside.

On the Third day, add mustard seeds to 4 spoons of oil and when it splutters add
fenugreek seeds and asafoetida. Add this to the pickle and mix.

Store in the refrigerator.

Monday, September 15, 2003


Mango pickle
Raw mangoes - 500 gms.
Fenugreek seeds - 3 tbsp.
Fennel seeds - 4 tbsp.
Red chilly powder - 2 tbsp.
Turmeric powder - 2 tsp.
Mustard seeds - 3 tbsp.
Mustard oil - 350 mls.
Salt As per taste

Cut raw mangoes into half, remove seed and then cut ¾th inch sized pieces. Apply turmeric powder and salt, rub nicely and then keep it for half an hour. Drain out excess moisture.
Grind fenugreek seeds, fennel seeds and mustard seeds to a coarse
Heat mustard oil until smoking point, remove and let it cool.
Mix fenugreek seeds, fennel and mustard powder with red chili powder.
Add half of the mustard oil to this mixture and rub this spice and oil mixture to the mango pieces. Mix thoroughly.
Put this into an earthenware jar and pour the remaining mustard oil.
Cover the jar with a muslin cloth and keep it in the sun for 5-6 days.
Make sure you stir the contents o f the jar for the first two weeks at least once a day. This is to ensure that the mango pieces are always in contact with the oil.

Note: In most of the Indian pickles, salt and oil are used as preservatives.


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