A pickle is such a dish that is famous all around the world. It is made from a variety of ingredients such as different fruits or vegetables. The spices also change accordingly. The pickle recipes are numerous but the basic recipe remains the same. Primarily, cucumbers, raw mangoes, onions, carrot, limes etc are used for making pickles. In India it is eaten as a side dish whereas in America it is an appetizer. Pickles are mainly prepared to reserve food stuffs. Pickling helps them to last longer even up to 1 or 2 years.
There are a number of pickle recipes. Out of which the most famous ones are described below. The cucumber pickle is made with the following ingredients;
1. 2 cups medium sized cucumbers
2. 1 cup onions
3. 1 cup vinegar
4. ¼ cup kosher salta
5. 1 cup water
6. ¾ cup sugar
7. ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
8. 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
9. ½ teaspoon ginger
10. ½ teaspoon celery seeds
Wash the cucumbers well. Cut thin slices and jeep aside. Mix well the onions, salt and cucumbers. Keep aside the mixture for about 1 to 2 hours. Drain off the liquid. Cook the remaining ingredients in a large cooking pot properly. Add cucumbers, salt and onions to the pot. Boil them for about 7 to 10 minutes until they are crisp and tender. Store the pickle in sterilized jars for about a month. After a month the pickle is ready to eat.
Instead of cucumbers, onions, cauliflowers, green tomatoes can also be used. The same pickle recipe applies to all these vegetables. The brine solution made from vinegar remains the same. In America, the pickle recipes are made with vinegar. However in India and other South East Asian countries, vegetable oil is used in place of vinegar.
Pickle recipes in India are made using raw mangoes, tamarind, limes, and tomatoes along with a number of spices and most importantly vegetable oil. The ingredients for the pickle are as follows
1. Limes (6 to 7 nos)/ raw mangoes/ carrot/ tomatoes/ tamarind
2. salt to taste
3. vegetable oil
4. 1 tablespoon chili powder
5. Garlic cloves (5 to 6 nos) optional
6. Ginger flakes (optional)
7. 1 tablespoon turmeric
8. 2 teaspoons powdered fenugreek
Wash the limes/raw mango pieces/ tamarind pieces or any other ingredient well. Slice or cut them in quarters retaining their juice. Take oil in a large cooking pot. Add turmeric, chili powder, salt and fenugreek and cook well. Seasoning should be checked properly. Cool the mixture and then add the slices of the main ingredient. Mix the mixture well so that the mixture is distributed evenly to all pieces. Store the pickle in sterilized jars for some time until all the ingredients settle down. After the settling period, the pickle can be eaten off the jars. Pickle recipes may not change but the ingredients do change. Every recipe made with a different ingredient has an equally good taste and flavor.