We all love pickles. I am sure you have relished the spicy lemon wedge or a chilli soaked in masala , tiny mango pieces juicy and tangy ....But in our fast paced lives, we barely are able to stir a meal together, where is the time for pickles. Though truly there is no substitute for home made pickles. Not only the satisfaction , but also the quality of oil used and how much is your call.
In our school holidays i have seen all households gear up for the pickle event in summer. I have sweet memories of how the Gujarati bens grate the mangoes and mix in the masalas. They make lovely spicy 'chunda' , mango pickle with corainder seeds and chillies and the sweet 'chunda' grated mango in sugar syrup. Mom would make the raw mango pickle 'Avakkai' ..king of pickles.
All kids would line up the vessels big and small on the terrace, for the pickles to bask in the sun.
Here i present my recipe of the lemon pickle. This also takes about 5-7 days to soften. Lemon is available round the year so this was my obvious choice.
Hot Water enough to soak lemon fully
Salt 1/2 cup
Turmeric 1 tsp
Methi Fenugreek seeds 2 tsp
Red Chilli powder 3 tbspn
Hing Powder 1 tsp
Sesame oil 1 cup approximately
Bring water to boiling point and remove from the stove.
Wash and soak the lemon in hot water for 15 minutes. Remove from water and wipe. Note for pickle all vessels,spoons used should be dry, else pickle will spoil.
Dry roast methi seeds and grind to coarse powder. Mix all the masala red chilli powder, salt and methi seeds in a big container.
Cut the lemon into four pieces. Since it has lot of juice cut lemons carefully, else the juice will enter your eyes. Add the lemon wedges and juice into the masala.
Heat sesame oil for 5 minutes. Add in mustard. Let it splutter and add hing (asafoetida) powder.
Remove from stove and wait for oil to cool. Now add the oil at room temperature to the lemon. Place a lid and leave it to soften for 24 -48 hours.
You can mix it once or twice .
After 2 days you can transfer the pickle to a porcelain jar or air tight bottle. You can place this in the fridge. Lemon takes 4-5 days to soften . Then Lemon Pickle is ready to serve.