Thursday, June 08, 2006

Mixed Lemon Pickle ( oil free)

I like my pickles hot. So when the lemon pickle that my mom gave got exhausted, I wanted to try out something different. I added whole green chillies and slices of bitter gourd. The combination turned out to be excellent with the pickle getting altogether a new and wonderful hot tangy taste. The beauty of this pickle is it is completely oil free.


50 ripe yellow lemons
250 gms green chillies
250 gms bitter gourd
200 gms crystal salt ( non-iodised)
250 gms chilly powder
250 gms garlic bulbs
3 tsp fenugreek powder
¼ tsp turmeric powder


Take 50 ripe yellow lemons ( Indian lemons are smaller in size compared to US / Europe/ Australia ) If the lemons are big in size take 15 to 20. Soak them in water for 10 minutes to get rid of dust / chemicals and wipe them completely dry with a dry cloth.

Squeeze 30 lemons of juice into a plastic container.. Cut the remaining 20 lemons into 4 pieces each.( If the lemons are big cut them to 8 or 16 pieces depending on how big the lemons are)

Add 200 gms of crystal salt after grinding it into powder to the lemon juice. Add a dash of turmeric powder ( ¼ spoon) to the juice.

Toss in the cut lemon pieces in the juice and marinate for a day and night. Squeeze the juice of each piece in the container and place them in the Sun on a polythene sheet. Expose the lemon rind to the Sun. At ~35 degrees centigrade and bright sunlight 5 to 6 hours of drying will do.

After removing the lemon pieces for drying, strain the juice to remove lemon seeds.

Take 250 gms of green chilles . Remove the broken / wilted and those turning to red colour. Wash the rest of the chilles with cold water and dry them completely. Remove the stalks. Pierce the chillies with a fork. Just a gentle nudge with the fork will do. Marinate the chillies in the juice container.

Take 250 gms of bitter gourd. Wash and dry them. Cut the bitter gourds into thin round slices. Remove the seeds. Marinate along with chillies.

Grind 250 gms garlic flakes to paste by adding a little of the juice in the mixie jar.
Add the paste to the juice.

Toss in 250 gms of red chilly powder to the container.

Add 3 tea spoons fenugreek powder and mix well.

Add the dried lemon pieces and mix well.

Marinate for a week. Taste the pickle and adjust salt.Transfer to jars.

Depending on your mood, you can choose to have a lemon piece, chilly or bitter gourd.

The shelf life of the pickle is one year. Towards the end of shelf life, chillies tend to get completely soft.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Ginger Pickle

This is one of the tastiest pickles. It goes well with rice, roti and with snacks.

Ingredients are Ginger, garlic, tamarind, jaggery, salt, chilly powder, Fenugreek seed powder( Menthulu in Telugu)

Take 250 gms of ginger, wash well in cold water, peel the outer layer, chop into fine pieces and grind to paste.

Take 100 gms of garlic bulbs- grind to paste

Take 200 gms of seedless tamarind- Soak in boiling water,( do not cook tamarind by allowing it to be on the stove for long ) let it remain in the water for a few hours till it cools to room temperature and grind to paste

Take 250 gms of Jaggery- grind to pulp/ powder. You can also beat it to fine powder. In place of jaggery, sugar ( one cup- about 100 gms) can be used but jagery has a better taste and the pickle shelf life will be long.

Take 250 gms of crystal salt and grind to powder ( do not use powder salt as it is usually idionised which will spoil the pickle )

Take 3 tea spoons of fenugreek seeds- fry them for a couple of minutes in a dry pan till they turn dark brownish. Powder the seeds.

Take 250 gms of Red chilly powder. If the chilly powder is not very hot, add another 50 gms

Mix all pastes in a container and grind once for a minute to get mixed well.

Take 100 gms gingelly / groundnut oil, heat it in a pan, and toss in 5 to 8 dry red chillies, 5 to 8 garlic bulbs, 2 tea spoons polished black gram, 1 tea spoon mustard seeds. Toss in a few curry leaves a second before the heat is turned off. After the oil cools, mix well with the pickle.

Transfer the pickle to a plastic or glass bottle.