Thursday, August 13, 2009

Lime Pickle


The moment I saw the lime pickle from here, I was bowled by its simplicity. The only worry was cooking in the sun. Though Singapore is a tropical country, it is very humid. Because of the humidity, our clothes catches fungus easily. We have to keep dehumidifier in all the wardrobes. So was very skeptical to prepare them but my internal gut feeling insisted me to try them atleast once with a small amount.
I tried a small amount with lemons first(original calls for lime). Though lemons have a thicker outer skin, it becomes soft faster than the limes. Limes have thin outer skin but takes a hell lot of time to become soft. I followed the recipe completely & replaced lemons in place of lime. I didnot even place it in hot sun. I kept it near the kitchen window whole day. The pickle was completely done in 20 days & voila....it was a superhit. .

On 15th of May'09, I decided to go for a big batch of lime pickle to impress my mom & my MIL. I kept it outside my kitchen or in the balcony for 4-5hours a day. The pickle took almost three months to soften. My mom & in-laws visited us & already moved back, but the pickle was still not ready. But, then when it became completely soft, it was...., AWESOME...

I was keeping my fingers crossed throughout as it took 3 months to soften. I was worried about the fungus (white substance that forms on pickles) & the yucky smell we get when pickles get spoilt. To my surprise, nothing happened. Now I have kept them in fridge & relishing it everyday. I am planning to start one more batch soon so that it is ready by the end of next quarter ;)

I am relishing this pickle from 5th of August & I feel all pickle lovers should try this atleast once in their lifetime :)

Ingredients:

Lime: 20 nos
Ginger: 1 cup (finely chopped or grated)
Green chillies: 50 nos
Fenugreek seeds: 1 tbsp (I didnot add this, but original recipe calls for it)
Salt: 1cup
Sugar: 3/4th cup
Mustard Seeds: 1 tbsp
Turmeric powder: 2 tbsp
Lemon juice: Juice of 1 lemon (approximately 3 tbsp)

Method:
  • Wash the lime, green chillies, ginger & pat them dry.
  • Chop the green chillies & lime as shown below.


  • Finely chop the ginger or grate them.

  • Dry roast the mustard seeds & fenugreek seeds seperately. Allow it to cool & powder them.

  • Take a sterilized glass jar(ensure no moisture inside the jar). Add 1/2 of the chopped lime pieces, green chilli, ginger. Add 1/2 cup salt, 1/2 cup sugar, 1 tbsp turmeric, half of the mustard + fenugreek powder.

  • Now add the remaining lime pieces, green chilli, ginger & the remaining salt, sugar, turmeric, mustard + fenugreek powder. Pour in the lemon juice & close the lid.

  • Shake the bottle well & keep it in your balcony. Keep shaking the bottle every alternate day & mix them thoroughly using a spatula once in fortnight.
Notes:
  1. The outer skin slowly changes its color from green to yellow & becomes soft.Sugar takes control over the bitter taste of lime. Juices tend to become thick as days & weeks pass by.

  2. Ensure there is no moisture on the inside of the lid, jar or spatuala used. Keep your palms dry.

  3. Use a clean spoon to scoop out the pickle.

  4. Just pinch a small portion of lime. Lime gets easily torn if it is completely soft & cooked. Also, the juices would have become thick. Once the pickle reaches this stage, you can store them in refrigirator.

  5. This pickle doesnot become sweet.

  6. After 10-15 days, if you feel salt, sugar or chilli is less, feel free to add them & mix them thoroughly. However, dont try to add chilli after the lime is almost soft & cooked.
I will update this post on how long the pickle lasted for me.