This is a Winter pickle in India when the freshest vegetables of all kinds are found in the markets!The winter lasts for 3-4 months and usually in the last weeks there is a mad scramble for such vegetables.In the metropolitan cities,produce are very easily available throughout the year though at exorbitant prices but in the small towns they are seasonal and people find it difficult and almost impossible to procure them out of season.
This pickle is the answer to “What do I make in winters to last me till the next season”?Well when you buy lovely juicy Carrots,fat Turnips and big creamy Cauliflower then try this pickle.Initially try with a small quantity but you will surely want more of it.This is a sweet and spicy pickle with a beautifully crimson red hue thanks to the chilli powder we use.As usual I give you some tips for the pickle:
- I have used Red Carrots but you can use Orange or Purple ones too.
- I have used Mustard Oil as this tastes best.You can use Sesame Oil or if you do not want a particular flavour then use Rice Bran Oil which blends well with the pickle.
- I have used Kashmiri Chilli Powder which is “sweet” for basic chilli powders and gives the beautiful Crimson colour.You can use Deghi Mirch or Guntur Chilli Powder which can be sourced from Andhra Pradesh.This powder is amazingly aromatic with a distinctive taste!
- Sauté the vegetables before pickling as this helps preserve the pickle for an infinite time.Do not skip this step.
- Measure all the ingredients carefully for the great taste this pickle will acquire.
- ALWAYS store the pickle in earthenware or glass jars or bottles.Never store in plastic even when it says “Food Grade Plastic” as the spices corrode the plastic which eventually merges with the pickle.
- When heating the Oil please be careful and do not have kids near you!
- When adding the Oil to the pickle,both the Oil as well as the pickle should have come to room temperature.There should not be any warmth left in the pickle.
Preparation Time : 1 hour
Maturation Time : 15 days – 1 month
Makes : Approximately 900 gms – 1 kg
200 gms fresh Carrots – approx 2 big
200 gms fresh Turnips – approx 2 fat ones
200 gms fresh Cauliflower florets – weight of the florets
2 cups Mustard Oil/your preferred Oil
1/2 cup White Vinegar
1/2 cup Jaggery Powder(gud powder)
1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp salt
3/4 cup Kashmiri Red Chilli Powder
For the Spice mix :
2 tbsp black Mustard Seeds(Rai)
2 tbsp yellow Mustard Seeds(Peeli Rai)
1 tbsp Fenugreek Seeds(methi dana)
1 tbsp Nigella Sativa Seeds (Kalonji) – optional but adds aroma
Prepare the vegetables :
Wash thoroughly and naturally dry all the vegetables before you start chopping them.Peel the Carrots and Turnips using a potato peeler and cut them in 1/2 inch batons which should approximately be the same size as the Cauliflower florets.Be careful not to add the leaves of the Cauliflower to the pickle as this will instantly grow fungus inside the pickle.
The prepared vegetables…
Prepare the spice powder :
Dry roast all the spices INDIVIDUALLY under Spice Mix ingredients and keep aside on a ceramic or stainless steel plate to cool.Grind to a powder.Add the Kashmiri Chilli Powder to the mixer and process again to make a lovely and aromatic spice powder for the pickle.Keep aside.
The Spice Powder..
Making the pickle :
Heat 1/2 cup of the Oil till it comes to smoking point(emits fumes) and then reduce to medium heat.With the sautéing spoon,lower the vegetables into the hot oil.Do not throw the vegetables in as the oil may splutter up.Saute for 5 minutes on medium heat till the vegetables get partly cooked.Take off heat and put the sautéed vegetables in a large glass or ceramic bowl to cool.
The sautéed vegetables…
After 10 minutes of cooling the vegetables,add the salt and spice powder.Mix well with a wooden spoon till thoroughly incorporated and leave to come to room temperature.
Adding the Spice Powder…
In the meantime heat the remaining Oil to smoking point (it emits fumes).Immediately take off heat and let it rest uncovered till it comes to room temperature.
After the Oil comes to room temperature add the Jaggery Powder and Vinegar to the pickle.
Adding the Jaggery Powder…
Adding the Vinegar…
Mix very well and transfer to a clean ceramic or glass jar.
Transferring the pickle to a jar…
Pour the Oil over and mix with a wooden spoon to amalgamate the Oil into the pickle.
Pouring the Oil over…
Keep the pickle jar in a cool cupboard for a day then keep it for a week in the sun.If your area does not have good sunlight then keep it in the cupboard for a month before opening!You can have the pickle before the maturation time but it will not taste as good and not mellow down.Also the vegetables would have tenderised even more after maturation time.
Serve with a clean spoon and always keep the jar tightly closed!
A close up shot!..