November 20, 2008

Lemon-Date Pickle



Didn't I put u guys in a pickle? Sorry, I have all these silly puns rolling around so couldn't resist. Wonderful guesses as usual.. only Sig got it right.. wonder how..she always does get it right!!Mandira followed suit but Happy cook's "Cake" and Srivalli's "whatever" were the best of the lot!!

Well this is the story of a pickle..I don't make pickles..I get them made by my family. Else, there is an entire aisle in the Indian store dedicated to all kinds of pickles.. Mother's , Grandma's, Uncles....even Double Horses, though they are not related to anyone.

Mishmash started it..with her munthiri pickle post. Last week we had a Biryani meal and sorely missed that essential thing called Karakka (Date) Pickle. Now those who are used to Biryani with that tangy sweet and spicy pickle will know how incomplete it feels without it and those who haven't tried it with biryani or pulav.. well, what to say..you are missing something.

Usually there is always a batch of the date pickle with carrots or with limes left over from my mom's last visit but now we were out. So I went to the Indian store to get Double Horse Lemon-Date Pickle (which is really good) and kept staring at the bottle I picked up..For some reason, it was all dusty and the contents looked cloudy and weird.. it was a revelation...I got transported back to Calicut..during the elementary school we visited a science show in the Medical college and saw some real horrors encapsulated in bottles!! Not to gross anyone with any further description, but suffices to say I was ready to make pickles at home.:)

RP has a collection of pickles for those to inclined to make them, so I decided to make her lemon-date pickle. So another day goes by and I raided my fridge and found 3 lemons.. not too old so will do..fresh is of course better. Very simple recipe and started out frying it with my last bit of Idhayam Nallenna (sesame oil) and salting them and I left them in the sun for 2 days...by then my Biryani was over!!:(

Anyway not to be stopped, I carried on..all this is in between my latest bout of studying..and when I had to do the second round of seasoning, I had no ginger.. so drove to the store and got ginger. So at each break I took, I would get back to the pickle. Got ginger so after cutting them, I started searching for the garlic. When I looked in the fridge now, my garlic had suddenly finished!! Argh!!! so borrowed garlic from my friend who I see more than the Indian store guy anyway and got back. Got everything now and then remembered that my nallenna had finished! I really should start making lists before going out. It seemed all the forces were against me.
Still didn't give up... everything went in along with olive oil.. I used light olive oil and it tasted just fine.. even nice, I would say...and then it sat on my window sill basking in the sun.. It looked a little less oily , so I topped it with a little olive oil to prevent air influx. Even though I had only 3 lemons, I added 12 dates and half Kashmiri chili powder, half hot red chili powder.


RP said one week so I waited, and I waited..shaking it, turning it, and finally after one week , it got opened.. and this is the result. It's really good even if I say so. The pickle is sweet, spicy and sour..maybe next time, I will put in more dates. So if you like more sweetness, add more dates and less lemon. Now pickles are not good for anyone, with their salt and spice and oil and all these bad in it..but a little bit of this home made one and you might start finding excuses to pass it as health food.
The recipe is exactly as RP wrote so I am just directing you there.

24 comments:

Nags said...

what an unusual combo. have never tasted something like this before :)

Anonymous said...

ahh...u had me there..
could n't figure out what it was.
running low on pickle and on a 'madi leave' 2day..so going to make. hopefully i hav all the ingre..s

Ann said...

I am real glad that i didnt make any guess..ha ha..I was about to write some cake or pudding..When i realised no,shaheen may be kidding..suddenly decided not to comment..ha
Dates pickle i love too.this one i havent tried..and the use of olive oil tempts me much

bee said...

you have nallena in your stores? ours doesn't carry it any more. :-( i have two lemons in the fridge. don' know how they got there. this pickle seems a good idea.

Sig said...

Yay! You have to start offering some prizes for these guesses ;)

Sia said...

slurppppp... date and lemon, these two ingredients are enough to make me swoon ;)

Happy cook said...

Ohhhhhhhhh i was wrong, nver had pickles with dates, it looks yummy spicy

Mallugirl said...

Nags, bet you will like it. its sweet and spicy and sour all at the same time and if u make it u can decide which high note to hit.

anon s, heh heh.. "hopefully u will have all the ingredients"

Ann, smart..eh.. those who don't play, no fair...can't sit on the sidelines and laugh. yeah, i used olive oil as i use it in everything except for deep frying but this actually tasted good. just don't use the extra virgin kind..use light one for cooking.

bee, yup, nallenna is there but one tiny bottle is now costing 6 dollars!!olive oil is cheaper!

sig, definitely..dunno how u do it though.. u are always correct.next time i will.

sia, it is swoonable.it was with hesitation that i first tried it, but now...i am believer.

happy cook.. u were brave enough to hazard a guess. unlike ann!!good job!

Mishmash ! said...

So it was mallugirl who was really in a pickle!!!! :)))

Uncle's brand? really..? atho thamaashichathano.?

Nat said...

doublehorse lemon date - thanks for the tip!

indosungod said...

Double horses is one I have not seen but Mother, Grandma and Uncle have all accompanies me home. I don;t see idhayam anymore. This healthfood pickle is something I got to try :)

Varsha Vipins said...

I bet it'd be super tasty..sweet n sour..loved it..kudos to ur persistence..:)

Anonymous said...

ahh..the last anon was me..with the madi leave clue u must hav figured it out..rt?
ki

Bharathy said...

Yeah!I remember this seeing in RP's place!..A natural sweettish addition to a pickle with a combo!..Nice to note that you try pickles, outside India!!
P.S..and you have commented in my baby potatoes post..hope you remember..you had even commented there :)
P.P.S ;)-Actually the root recipe is yours..an adaptation of your wonderful chicken "cry" recipe :)..

lan said...

'go with biriyani' sounds so right. i am not a pickle person but 'must have' lemon pickle for biriyani. somehow it sounds like this is a better match. hope i'll find some in stores as i've never had this before. yum inspiring picture!

Ramya Vijaykumar said...

First time here I feel this is just perfect for the season...

Mallugirl said...

ki.. i thot u signed off as s!! it did sound like you but one can never be sure. what if it was someone else and i showed familiarity!!why the madi?

Mallugirl said...

shn, yeah, silly pun!! was wondering how many will catch that!

Mallugirl said...

nat, yup i always bought that.. but if u have time try making this.

indo, u seem to have the whole family in your cupboard! is there a idhayam deficiency around?

bharathy, now i remember that potato!so nags is delving deep into ur old portfolio!

Rajesh &Shankari said...

Piping hot roti and this pickle will be heavenly!

syeda said...

enda molay?sugham? :-) I am learning malayalam!
the pickle looks awesome, we had one raddish-coconut pickle here,in a malabari retsaurant,if you know its recipe can you plz post it!

DEESHA said...

thatz a lovely combo .. have never had it before, looks yumm

Simi said...

I love Lemon-date pickle. My grandma made it for me this time when I came from india. It goes very well with Biryani. Thanks for the Recipe.

whitefieldbb@gmail.com said...

Have never heard of lemon date pickle so loved this...it satisfied my research for unusual recipes instinct for the day.
Loved the funny write up that went with the recipe too.
Want to try it all...biriyani, pickle,beetroot, kala channa.