Making pickles was my Dads hobby. Though my Dad never cooked Lunch or Dinner for the family, he has a special interest in certain recipes. He loved making pickles. Its a tough job, a very tough job. Its very unlike the regular cooking. May be that was the reason my Mom wasnt so interested in making pickles. I set out on an adventure to make pickles just as a tribute to my Dad. The end result was very hot and very sweet. Ofcourse, pickles are hot. But sweet? right...memories and achievement are sweet.
The recipe listed here does not contain oil and a very traditional Konkani Style pickle.
Heres how to start with the mixed vegetable pickle
Gather some very fresh veggies such as
lime, preferably keylime, make sure the skin is not dried.
green chillies, make sure the seeds haven't blackened
tendle, tindora, use only if its tender and tiny
1 cup salt, table salt or sea salt, your choice
1.5 cup water
1 cup chilli powder
1/2 cup mustard seeds
2 tsp hing
Boil the water, add salt and continue boiling for may be 15mins. Now cover with a thin cloth or splatter screen and rest it till completely cool. Better wait for half a day.
Clean and slice the veggies, drain the water, pat and dry them completely. Make sure no water droplets remain. In a glass jar, add the veggies and now pour the salted water till everything is submerged. Store in a cool place for 2-3 weeks. You can keep it for longer say up to a month. The veggies absorb salt and get tastier.
Now drain the salt water from the veggies into a bowl. We will use this water to make the pickle paste.
Take a clean blender jar and finely powder the mustard seeds. Add the together chilli powder and hing and blend together everything, use the salt water and make a paste. Blend for may be 10- 20mins. This helps to get the powders blend together making the paste smoother and soft. Without blending the paste remains grainy and you can surely feel the difference.
Now mix together the veggies and the paste, store in a cool place. Stays for up to a year. If done right may be years.
Here's a trick from me for amateurs like myself. Add a tablespoon of vinegar(preferably buy a naturally brewed one) to the salt water when you soak the veggies. Helps as a natural preservative, also adds sourness to the pickle.