Saturday 2 May 2015

Mango Thokku (மாங்காய் தொக்கு)

Summer in Tamil Nadu marks the beginning of mango season. This is the ideal time for enjoying delicious mangoes and preparing pickles & preserves. Among the different pickles you can make with raw mango, ‘mango thokku’ (மாங்காய் தொக்கு) is a tasty and easy-to-make pickle. This goes very well with curd rice and can even be eaten with dosa or chapatti. You can prepare small quantities afresh every week. I simple love ‘mango thokku’, so does my family! Let’s proceed with the recipe.

Fig.1: Kili mooku mango (கிளி மூக்கு மாங்காய்)

Raw mango – 1 no*
Red chili powder – 1 teaspoon (add ½ teaspoon more if you desire the pickle to be ‘hot’)
Sesame oil – 1 small hollow ladle or 50ml measure
Salt – to taste
Methi powder – ¼ teaspoon
Turmeric powder – ½ teaspoon
Asafoetida – a generous pinch
Mustard seeds – 1 teaspoon
Jaggery – powdered, ½ teaspoon (optional)

*Though any variety of raw mangos may be used, I get best results with ‘kili mooku mango’ (கிளி மூக்கு மாங்காய்) (Fig.1).

Method: Wash, peel and grate the mango flesh using a grater (Fig.2). Discard the seed. Heat oil in a kadai, add mustard seeds and when they start to sputter switch off the stove. Add the grated mango and salt. Mix well. Add red chili powder, asafoetida, turmeric powder, methi powder and jaggery. Mix well. Heat on medium flame for 2 minutes and switch off the fire.  Allow the pickle to cool and then store.
Fig.2: Grated mango flesh
How to prepare methi powder: Roast 1 teaspoon of methi seeds in a kadai on medium flame till the seeds turn reddish. Remove from fire. Cool to room temperature and powder the seeds using the mortar and pestle. Freshly ground methi powder adds to the taste and aroma of the pickle.
Mango Thokku (மாங்காய் தொக்கு)
How to care for the pickle: Store the pickle in a clean, dry, air tight jar or bottle. Always use dry spoon for handling the pickle. Mix the pickle well with a spoon once every day.

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