Star gooseberries (அரி நெல்லிக்காய்) are available in abundance during the summer months – April and May. It is well known that star gooseberries are rich in vitamin C; however, they are also rich in calcium and phosphorus. As children, we used to simply eat the ripe berries which have a strong sour taste. Traditionally, these berries are used to make salted pickle, hot pickle and pachadi. Let’s see how to make hot gooseberry pickle.
Gooseberries – 3 teacups or 600 ml measure (preferably ripe)
Salt – to taste
Red chili powder – 1½ small hollow ladle or 75 ml measure
Methi or fenugreek powder – ¾ teaspoon*
Turmeric powder – ½ teaspoon
Gingelly oil – 2 small hollow ladle or 100 ml measure
Mustard seeds – 1½ teaspoon
Asafoetida – ¼ teaspoon
Jaggery – powdered, 1 teaspoon (optional)
*Roast fenugreek seeds in a kadai till they turn darker in color. Once cooled to room temperature, powder the seeds finely using the mortar and pestle.
|Hot Star Gooseberry Pickle (அரி நெல்லிக்காய் கார ஊறுகாய்)|
Method: Wash and drain the gooseberries. Heat a small hollow ladleful (50 ml) of oil in a kadai, and add mustard seeds. Once they start to sputter, add the berries and sauté for 2 minutes on medium flame. Add turmeric powder and salt to the berries. Cover and cook on low flame till the juice from the berries is fully absorbed. Add chili powder, fenugreek powder, asafoetida, jaggery and remaining oil and mix well. Switch off the stove. After the pickle cools to room temperature, store in a dry, airtight bottle or container. Use a dry spoon for serving the pickle. Mix the pickle thoroughly once in 2 days.
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