A bottle of homemade pickle will be found in any self-respecting Indian household. And If you happen to be an Indian living away from India then you must be smuggling homemade pickle jars every time you pay a visit to your homeland. As for me, I get jars of home made pickles made lovingly by my MIL not just when I visit but also every time we have any family or friends visiting us in the US.! isn’t that wonderful? I have been so dependent on my MIL’s pickles that I never ever bothered to try making one on my own. My MIL’s specialty pickles are amla(gooseberry) pickle and mini mango(kadu manga) pickle although she makes the regular lime pickle and the green mango pickle too. Ooh… what’s about pickles that even the thought of them makes your mouth water ? Only those who have tasted these hot, spicy and tangy pickles will know what I am talking about! To those not familiar with the variety of Indian pickles, I recommend you start with some good brands from the Indian grocers and remember to only use them as a relish – these are extra hot and spicy!. But for those of us who are hooked onto the homemade ones, the store bought ones are not even close! For one, they just have too much salt. And too much oil. And then they are bulk processed …not lovingly made in a home kitchen you see. There goes.
Anyways one pickle that I have always liked a lot is the mixed vegetable pickle. When we were kids, I remember my dad always bringing this immensely tasty ‘Mixed vegetable pickle’ from his company store that sold certain specialty foods like pickles and chutneys. This pickle used to come in a large white plastic jar and with 4 ladies in the house, the entire jar would get done in less than a month! 🙂 Give me some plain white rice, dal and this pickle anytime! Yum! Absolute comfort food.
OK So a few months ago Apsara from Eating Well Diary posted a mixed vegetable pickle recipe which had mango,lime, karela (bitter gourd) and carrots. And looking at that I instantly knew I had to try making it! So finally I got a chance to make it a couple weeks ago. I modified the recipe slightly (reducing the amount of chili powder and also added a couple other spices. And I also added a splash of vinegar as I recalled my maternal grandma adding that to her pickles. I showed great will power in not touching it for 2 whole weeks and now its ready to be relished!