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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Home Made pickles - Lemon

I wanted to upload the picture of a batch of lemon pickle I made some time back. I started making pickles on my own while in Cyprus. Lemon was an obvious choice in the haven for citrus fruits. Kypro! It all happened because Srinath's friend lived in a private villa and the landlord had an abundant harvest of lemons that season. She came up and asked me to prepare her a jaadi of lemon pickles. I began, and ended up making seven large batches for other friends. They loved it. Here is the picture of one of the many jars of pickles I made in these six years.

The recipe is pretty basic and conventional.
  • We start with washing and drying lemons for slicing them into eight or 4 equal pieces (based on the size of the lemon)
  • keep aside two lemons for the juice for the lime pieces to soak
  • Sliced pieces are marinated with salt and turmeric and left to soak in juice (of two lemons) in an air tight container. 
  • After five to six days we spread this mixture onto a tray or a plate to sun dry. 
  • Once the water is almost dried out and lemons are decently soaked, (takes three days generally) 
  • Temper the mixture using an oil of your choice (sunflower / olive /  til). 

    Lemon pickle doesn't go well with garlic. It is better to temper them without garlic. This is when you add  required amount chilli powder. Tempering would require mustard seeds, methi seeds and asafoetida. (just eye ball the quantity depending on the quantity of lemon used). For example, if you have two cups of lemon mix, 1 tsp each of mustard and methi seeds and 1 pinch of asafeotida would be good.

    Lemon pickles are easy to make and just need a little bit of elbow grease. They taste wonderful with kanji-vallam or a simple thayir sadam. Stuffed parata and kulcha taste great with lemon pickle. A small bite of lemon pickle with "vepamboo " (neem flower- dried) rasam and sadam. tastes great. Weird! believe me, the combo tastes yummy. Lemon actually sets off "vepamboo".'s subtle bitter flavor. This is particularly when I am recouping from fever or cold. Just try it. It tastes yummy!

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