I have never tried making pickles at home,except for a once in a while Dry lime pickle,that too for not wasting the lime peels.We two are not exactly pickle-loving people and can happily live without it.In fact,there's a joke in the family which goes right for appa and my hubby-the moment they ask for a pickle it means the food is either bland or tasteless,incidentally appa asks for pickle only when I cook..;-).My bro and amma on the other hand are absolute pickle fans,they need some pickle or the other on the side..my bro even has it with chapathi!!
We like to have pickle generously only when we are having pej/kanji.Pickle and curd mixed with kanji is an absolute comfort food.Since I really can't make it in small quantities(I am lazy,to be frank!)I prefer to take my share from amma and ma-in-law.Our fridge is stacked with bottles of pickles which I have bought from both places during our visits.Our friends just need to take a peek and woof..the stock is over;-).
Avvalo puddi ghallelle...the name's a bit tricky I know...its just the konkani name for Gooseberry dry pickle.Yup,this one too is made by amma and I got it during my trip to Ekm.Since we were travelling back to Chennai from another place,amma packed a few idlis smeared with this pickle and a dash of coconut oil in a tiffin box for me.We started from home early morning and our train was in the evening.The moment we sat on the train,I opened my tiffin box and goodness heavens..it was too good..lipsmacking good!!Hubby couldn't believe I was having cold idlis with pickle and raving about it too...only if he understood,but he was nose deep in his Biryani and wouldn't even take a peek into my box..!!Avvalo puddi ghallello/Gooseberry dry pickle
Avvalo/Gooseberry - 1/2 kg
Red chillies – 2 handfuls,preferably a mix of byadge chillies and normal ones
Salt to taste-use a bit more than required.Since the pickle takes time to mature,it always helps as a preservative
Mustard seeds – 1 tsp
Methi seeds – 1 tsp
Hing/Asafoetida – 1 tbsp
Gingelly oil – 5-6 tbsp
Wash the gooseberries well,apply enough salt and steam them for about 10 minutes(or till soft cracks start appearing in the top).
Dry them in the sun for a day or two,till completely dry.
In a kadai,add oil and fry red chillies.Add the methi and mustard seeds and switch off the flame.Add enough salt and grind into a powder.Add hing and keep aside.
In the same kadai,add some more oil and fry the dried gooseberries till they become slightly soft.Switch off the flame and let it cool to room temperature.Add the masala powder to the gooseberries and mix well.
Add some more oil if you think the pickle is too dry.Store in dry airtight containers.
This pickle is my last minute entry for this month's AFAM-Gooseberry.