I have posted many Puddigallele ( dry Pickles ) recipes in this blog – Mango , Goose berries , lemon, Hog plums . Since they are not oily ones and taste so good – I prefer these to oily ones . I had never attempted to make with bitter gourds even though my hubby loves it the most – because the recipe I knew called for frying the bitter gourds in oil . But when I got a bumper harvest of fresh bitter gourds at home – I thought of trying in the usual sun dried way – & was happy to get good results . So let’s check out the recipe –
Here is a part of the harvest I got
- Fresh Bitter gourds / Kaarates – 1/2 kg (use any variety)
- Tamarind paste – 2 tbsp
- Basic Pickle masala ( sassma pitto ) – recipe given separately below
- Gingelly Oil – about 6 tbsp
- Salt – 2 tbsp or more as per taste
Wash the bitter gourds well . Wipe, dry and cut into thin pieces . Apply salt and keep for some time . You can do this at night leaving them salted over night , So that next day you can set them out to dry in the morning . The gourds would have let out a little water . Spread them out on a sheet or large plate to dry .
After a sunny day – collect the pieces in a bowl – add the tamarind paste and mix well . Cover and leave it overnight .
Next day morning again spread out the pieces under the sun for the second day .
Keep it again under the sun for the third day too . Check by afternoon if its very hot if not keep it for full day . Remember that the pieces should be dry and yet soft to touch , They should NOT be hard . Next day add about 1 tbsp oil in a kadai and add the pieces , Stir for a few minutes so that the pieces get warm . Remember not to keep them on fire for long , We should warm them enough just to make sure they have no moisture left . ( If you keep them on stove for longer they may turn hard . )
Now get ready all the masalas and a sun dried bottle . Make sure the bowl and spoon that you are going to use is dry , Heat about 3 tbsps of Gingelly oil . switch off flame . then add about 50 gms of chilli powder ( I make them spicy ..if you want you can lessen as per your taste ) & 1 tsp hing – into the oil . & stir quickly so that it gets roasted . you can judge by the aroma that it has roasted well .You may also add the chilli powder without roasting too and so skip this step.But roasted chilli powder has its own flavour – so I recommend this step.
Add a little salt ( remember you have already salted the Kaarates ) and a little more than 1 tbsp of the masala . Mix all of them well to blend . Then add the Kaarate pieces
Mix thoroughly with the spoon
Transfer to the bottle packing it tightly in without any gaps .
Now heat about 3 tbsp of oil in a kadai ( you may add more if you want ) to smoking point . Switch off flame and let cool completely .
Now add the cool oil to the pickle .
Tighten lid well and keep in a cool dry place
Your pickle is ready to use after a week . though it tastes best after a longer time
Enjoy with rice as a side dish .
Ingredients for the basic masala ;
- Red chilies – 20 – 22 as per taste
- Mustard seeds – 1 tbsp
- Methi seeds – 3/4 tbsp
Note ; the above amount is for half a kg of any variety to be pickled . Usually this can be prepared in larger quantities & used whenever needed . this acts as a preservative & gives added flavor to the pickle
- Roast red chilies , mustard & methi separately .
- Grind in a sun – dried mixer jar to a fine powder .
- Store in a dry glass bottle .
Usually I powder roasted mustard & methi only & then add roasted red chilli powder whenever I am making pickles
- Always be sure that all utensils used are dry and handled with dry hands
- Do not store inn plastic containers – Use only glass bottles or porcelain Bharnis .
- Use Gingelly oil for best taste – NEVER use Coconut oil for this .
- For more amount of Veggie – just increase the amount of masalas accordingly .
- Addition of salt while making the pickle should be carefully done after tasting thr pickle and only if necessary .