Amla or the Indian gooseberry is a seasonal fruit and arrives in winter by the cartloads. Packed with vitamin C and other good nutrients, this juicy fruit has an immediate sour taste with the sweet and bitter notes released on chewing it. It can be turned into jam, pickles, sherbet, supari, or just eaten raw, with a little salt and chilli powder. Amla supari is especially useful to chew on in case of an uneasy tummy.
The amla pickle combines the tangy taste of amla with the hot spiciness of chillies and the very different heat of mustard. Quick and easy to make, it is a must on your dining table, to balance the heavy sweets-packed Diwali dinner!
Here's the Amla pickle recipe.
4-6 amla fruits
1-2 green chillies
A few drops of lemon juice
1 tsp mustard seeds ground/ powdered
Salt to taste
For the dressing:
1 tbsp oil
¼ tsp Haldi (turmeric)
Pinch of Hing (asafoetida)
½ tsp mustard seeds whole
Pressure cook the amla. Let cool. Then remove stone and dice the flesh. Cut green chilli into pieces. Boil for a minute in very little water.
Mix the amla, chilli, mustard seed powder and salt. Add the lemon juice if you want an extra sour tang. Add the water in which the chilli pieces were boiled. Stir everything.
Heat oil, add mustard seeds. When they splutter add hing, haldi and remove from flame. Let the dressing cool. Pour the dressing over the pickle. Mix well. The pickle is ready to eat. Tastes better if kept for a day before eating so as to let the flavors mix well.
Note: You can change the proportions of the ingredients in the recipe to suit your taste. Ideally store in glass or ceramic containers. This pickle remains good in the refrigerator for weeks. If you're in a hurry, or do not wish to grind mustard, or for a slightly different taste, you can also use the readymade mustard chilli pickle masala.