Lesser-known fruit pickles in India
Uncommon fruit pickles that you need to try today.
Indians prefer to have an assortment of flavours and a blend of different tastes in their meals. A simple meal of steamed rice and dal can also be flavourful with some accompaniments in the form of delicious pickles. Nearly every household has its unique recipes for pickles that are often passed down through many generations.
Pickles in India are typically made using pieces of seasonal fruit or vegetable with oil, salt and various spices. The ‘pickle masala’ is a very common ingredient in most of the pickles. It is a mixture of powdered spices such as fennel seeds, coriander seeds, cumin, fenugreek seeds, turmeric powder, etc.
While raw mango, green chilli and lemons are very popular as pickle ingredients, many lesser-known fruits also make for delicious and uncommon pickles.
Rose apple pickle
Rose apples is a South Asian fruit that is indigenous to Malaysia, Indonesia and the Indian subcontinent. To make some quick sweet rose apple pickle, wash the fruit thoroughly and cut it into small pieces. Mix some salt, chilli powder, turmeric powder and the rose apple pieces in a bowl. Heat some gingelly oil in a pan and add mustard seeds and asafoetida to it. Add the mixture from the bowl to the pan and cook for a minute or two. Take it off the stove, drizzle some vinegar and mix it well. The rose apple pickle can be stored in the refrigerator for a month.
Citrus fruits grow well in the warm climate of India. Beautiful, clear-skinned oranges are widely available in great piles all around the country during the winter season. To prepare pickled oranges, peel the oranges, deseed and dice them. Add some chopped fresh green chillies, rock salt, a pinch of asafoetida, oil and pickle masala to the diced orange pieces. Mix all the ingredients well and serve after letting the flavours soak in. The next time you have some oranges that are too sour to squeeze into juice, you know what to do.
Start with washing some ripe tamarind pieces thoroughly to get rid of the tiny pieces of its shell. Remove the seeds and grind the tamarind coarsely in a grinder. Mix some roasted cumin powder, turmeric powder, salt, red chilli powder and fennel seeds powder in a bowl. Add the mixture to the grinder, make a coarse paste and set it aside. Heat some oil in a pan and add the paste to it. Add a few pieces of jaggery and cook the mixture till the jaggery melts and mixes well. Let it cool and relish the tamarind pickle.
Pineapples are luscious tropical fruits that are tempting enough to be sliced and eaten away. But try to spare some of it to prepare this sweet, tangy and spicy pickle. Start with heating some gingelly oil in a pan. Cut the pineapple into small pieces and set aside. Add mustard seeds to the oil and spoon in some asafoetida as soon as the seeds start crackling. Add salt, chilli powder and pineapple pieces and sauté the mixture for two-three minutes. Switch off the flame and let it cool. Add some lemon juice to it and mix well. Store the pineapple pickle in a cool place and consume it within two weeks.
Are there any other exotic fruit pickles that you have tasted or prepared? Let us know in the comments section below.