The pickling season is upon us and for more than eighty years now, P Mark Mustard Oil has been a part of this rich Indian tradition.
Typically, pickling is an activity that mainly takes place during the summer months when the sunshine is strong and the raw mangoes are ready for plucking. North India (especially Punjab, Haryana and Delhi) has a mind-boggling array of traditional Mango Pickle recipes. We know these – and we’ve tasted them often. So let’s move to the Western part of India for a different taste, a different flavour and a different experience of the good old Indian Mango Pickle.
In Gujarat, the Kutch area and parts of Rajasthan, there is a fascinating mango pickle made with split fenugreek seeds. Fenugreek is called methi in India – hence, the folks in Gujarat call this pickle Methia Keri (Keri means mango).
Along with the raw mangoes, split fenugreek seeds and split mustard seeds are placed in the pickling jars and put out in the sun. Here’s a little tip in case you can’t find split fenugreek and mustard seeds. Place whole fenugreek seeds and yellow (or black) mustard seeds in a grinder and create a coarse mixture. It will serve your purpose without affecting the taste.
The flavour is heightened by adding select spices like red chilli powder, turmeric powder and asafoetida (heeng). Add salt to taste – the traditional recipe uses rock salt.
The typical flavour of fenugreek blends with the sour (khatta) taste of the raw mango and the pungency of mustard to create a mellow taste that tickles the taste buds and spices your food up.
This is the amazing thing about the Indian pickling tradition – the same recipe is brought alive in so many different ways!