A memorable Culinary Journey!

Punjabi Mango Pickle – with regional variations!

Punjabi Mango Pickle – with regional variations!

Exploring the local markets is my passion and nothing delights me more than finding a veggie or fruit out of season to be made into something delightful!The other day I made my way into the lovely market in Matunga and to my surprise and delight found a seller keeping lovely raw Mangoes.He said that these were stocked in his godowns and were developing black patches on the skin due to continual testing for ripeness and he needed to dispose them off as soon as possible!The price was very reasonable – even less than what they sell in the prime Mango season so I got myself a bagful and jumped for joy as I thought of the lovely spices and glass bottles and ceramic jars these Mango pieces would be getting themselves into!

I had posted this recipe a couple of years earlier but now I repost it with a new theme and renewed pics.As the name suggests this pickle originated in Punjab where the Mustard crop grows in plentiful yellow blooms over March – May.They are harvested for their leaves in winter,their seeds which are used in so many spices and used whole as well and for their precious,lovely,amber Oil.I used to make this pickle with Mustard Oil until a South Indian friend who had come for lunch changed my mindset and made me try out another delicious version of this pickle.

In South,Sesame/Til Oil is used both in pickles and as a cooking medium and some of the non adventurous types of people prefer to stick to how they have primarily been bought up.So this friend tasted the pickle and said that she would have preferred this pickle over anything else if Sesame Oil had been used.She said that Sesame Oil goes very well with South Indian items which is very true and this pickle could be tried with that as well.Now I am a Mustard Oil fan and wanted a pot of Mustard Oil pickle in my cabinet too.So I divided the Mangoes in two portions for these two delicious pickles:

1.Punjabi Mango pickle 

After making the Masala would be further divided into half where one would be steeped in Mustard Oil and the other in Sesame/Til Oil.

2.Manga Kari

A delicious South Indian Pickle also reposting again with fresh pics!The next post!

Link for Manga Kari:


I remember my grandmother making a salted Mango pickle in which she added Sesame Oil which I would lick all the spices from and afterwards suck till gone!I salivated at these thoughts and proceeded to make two of the most delicious Mango pickles ever!The Masala is the same but the Oils are different both having spectacular tastes!


1.I removed the outer green skin from the Mangoes as they had black patches on them due to constant testing for ripeness by the seller.The Mangoes are chopped into pieces with the skin on in the original recipe. 

2.If you want the pickle to be fiery then use a spicy chilli powder like Tikhalal or use extra spicy red chillies for powdering.I always use Kashmiri Chilli Powder for mild spiciness and beautiful colour.

3.For half the quantity(1/2 kg) use 3/4 litre of Oil of your preference.If you want to make the whole batch in one kind of Oil use 1 1/2 litres.


Punjabi Mango Pickle..

Preparation Time : 1 hour

Makes : 1 1/2 – 2 kg


1 kg firm and unripe Mangoes

2 tbsp Fenugreek Seeds(Methi dana)

3 tbsp Black Mustard Seeds(Rai)

1 tbsp yellow Mustard seeds(peeli rai) – If you do not get yellow mustard seeds then substitute the quantity with 4 tbsp of black mustard seeds

2 tbsp Fennel Seeds(saunf)

2 tsp Nigella Sativa Seeds(Kalonji)

10-15 dried red Kashmiri Chillies/3 tbsp Kashmiri Chilli Powder

1 tbsp Turmeric Powder(Haldi)

3/4 liter Mustard Oil/3/4 liter Sesame Oil


Clean,wash and wipe the Mangoes with a clean cloth.Leave them in open air for 2-3 hours or in the Sun for 1 hour to dry well.Cut into cubes or as you want with/without the skin.Keep aside.


Dry roast the spices each one separately in a non-stick pan.Roast the black and yellow mustard seeds first,then fenugreek,fennel,nigella seeds and red chillies(if using) on medium heat till each release their unique aroma.Empty them into dry and cool ceramic or steel plates till they come to room temperature.

In a coffee or spice grinder,grind all the spices and chillies till a fine powder is obtained.If using chilli powder,mix that as well into the spice powder and grind in short pulses till well amalgamated.


The wonderful aromatic powder..

Keeping aside 2 tbsp of Both Oils,heat the rest of them(individually) in a saucepan till they come to smoking point(emit fumes).Keep aside to come to room temperature.Do not cover the saucepan.

Heat the 2 tbsp reserved Oil in a non stick pan to smoking point.Very carefully drop the Mango pieces into the Oil (very gently as the Oil would be very hot).Lower the heat and stir well.Add the spice powder(remember to use half the quantity when using both Oils).Mix well till the spice powder is fried and gives out a lovely aroma!Remove the Mango pieces to a glass/ceramic container,cover with a clean kitchen towel and leave to come to room temperature.

When the pickle as well as the Oils have cooled to room temperature,gently pour over the Oil into the jar.If making with both Oils,you can attach a sticker to the container or keep them in different coloured containers or have different coloured lids so that you do not get confused!Mix with a clean spoon and close the container tightly.

Keep in the Sun for 3-4 days and in a nice clean and cool cabinet for 1-2 months before you take it out for eating!As they say

“Sugar and Spice and all things nice”!

The Mustard Oil Pickle..dark and fragrant



The Sesame Oil Pickle..a lovely brown colour which is a little milder in taste but having a South Indian “feel”




Your expert comments and views about this recipe?

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