Pickles! Although prepared world-wide, but Indian pickle are one of its kind. Right? And what are Indian pickles? Does someone really have complete knowledge?
We generalise them based on our regional knowledge, but travel a few hundred kms and you would open a pandora of new techniques, vegetables and flavours.
Perfect for working up the appetite and getting the gastric juices flowing, it is that magic finger lick that adds wonder to all your thalis or one pot meals.
What is life without a little bit of tang and achaar are the perfect way to do that.
Katki bhagar, godkeri thepla, khatti keri khichadi etc you can make your own combo .
My own household can boast of tens of varieties. Seven to eight out of those relating only to our humble mango.
But today we are venturing a little far, diving and exploring a summer vegetable that has been used for pickling for decades at my house.
Called by the name of gunda, lesua, bhorka or if using the English term called as clammy berry or gum berry. These glossy green fruits are stuffed with a sticky pulp and single seed.
Gunda are picked during the month of summers. A favourite at my house or may be all gujratis out there. Gunda is A must variety to make in summer before June hits. You can easily find it in your market or may be ask your vendor for.
I still remember a time when my mom and aunt used to ask ferriwalas or rickshawwalas to help them pluck these globular berries hanging down from the woody stalks off of the tree when it was quite not easily available with nearby vendors.
But as time went by, I suppose it has gained more recognition and has also been explored by 5 star restaurants too.
This pickle is stuffed with grated mango masala to counteract and balance the flavour of gunda.
Also, I am really thankful of living in Nagpur, our answer here to every pickle is making full use of the sun. We use it to sterilize pickle jars, thicken pickle syrups, dry leftover mango seeds.
And isn’t pickle making fun too, the constant care every day just like making your own starter or checking on your seasonal batch of pot pourri.
A great hobby if you ask me.
And the best part it isn’t something that spoils as soon as you make it provided you make it perfectly it lasts for years. And each batch gets better as older it gets.
Follow the recipe given below diligently and not only would you enjoy the fruits of your labour yearlong you might also start loving the activity itself. Involve your family members too in the process filled with mess, cleanliness, camaraderie and laughter.
Here’s to a summer vacation we all craved during this lockdown. Let’s start.
Gunda nu athaanu (Clam berry pickle)
- 1 cup Split mustard seeds (rai ki dal)
- 1/4 cup Split fenugreek seeds (methi ki dal)
- 4 fat pinch Asafoetida
- 1/2 tsp Turmeric
- 1/2 cup Salt
- 2 cup Peanut oil Plus More required after two days.
- 1/4 cup Chapata red chilli powder
- 1/4 cup Kashmiri red chilli powder
Grating Raw Mango
- 1 kg Raw mango
- 1 tbsp Salt
- 1/2 tbsp Turmeric
Prepping Gunda (clam berry)
- 500 gm Gunda (clam berry)
- Sour water to soak clam berries
- 1 tsp Salt
Making Pickle Masala
- Take the mentioned quantity of masalas and a paraat.
- Lightly pulse the split mustard seeds in a mixer.
- Roast salt in a saute pan. Keep aside.
- First place the split mustard seeds. Make a well place split fenugreek seeds in the center, Sprinkle asafoetida and turmeric on the split fenugreek seeds.
- Surround the split mustard seeds with salt.
- Heat oil till smoking. Pour one or two ladle over the split fenugreek, asafoetida and turmeric. Little will pour over the split mustard seeds. Cover and keep for a while.
- Let the remaining oil cool for 10 more minutes till warm and pour it over the rest of the masala. Mix it well.
- Let the masala cool and then add the red chilli powders and mix well. Your masala is ready.
Grating and prepping Raw Mango
- Wash and peel the raw mango. And grate it using the thick side of the grater.
- Add salt and turmeric and let it stand on kitchen counter uncovered atleast for two hours.
- The salt helps in releasing the extra moisture and turmeric helps with nutrition and preservation.
- Squeeze out and save the released sour water.
Prepping Clam berries
- Wash the clam berries. Remove the stalks and soak the berries in the sour water for half an hour.
- Drain and let the berries dry in the strainer itself.
- After it gets dry break each berry with a pestle. Remove seed using fork and line the interior with salt.
Stuffing & Bottling
- Add the required amount of masala to the grated and squeezed raw mango and make a filling. Save the extra masala.
- Stuff the mango masala in the deseeded clam berries i.e gunda.
- Collect in a big bowl. Cover with lid. Toss and turn it once every morning and evening for two days.
- Transfer it to a sterilized ceramic or glass jar. Heat oil and completely cool it down (sufficient to cover the pickle entirely) and add it.
- Add the saved extra masala and mix properly.
- Continue with the tossing twice a day for a week and keep it covered in a cool dry dark place for atleast a week to further the fermentation process.
- Enjoy your Gunda nu athaanu as and when you please year long.