There is a story to this pickle. My friend, Rosebud, who kindly opened her home to us fotr the photography session for this book, had someone by the name of Apana in her house. Apana came from India when he was just 8 years old and lived with Rosebud’s family until he was 80 and has since passed on. He was a handyman who could do almost everything. He learnt to make this pickle from a family recipe and taught Esther, who has also been living in Rosebud’s home since she was a little girl, to make the pickle. Esther has been making this pickle now for many years and runs a thriving business selling it. She very kindly agreed to share the recipe with me. It is a truly scrumptious pickle that goes with almost everything.
-500 g(1 lb 11/2 oz) green mangoes
-2 Tbsp ground turmeric
-salt, as needed
-3 Tbsp mustard seeds
-3 Tbsp fenugreek
-3 Tbsp fennel seeds
-2 Tbsp chilli powder
-350 ml(11/2 fl oz) uncooked sesame oil
-a handful of garlic cloves, peeled
Peel and cut the mangoes into 1.5-cm(3/4-in) cubes. Place in a bowl and rub with the turmeric and a pinch of salt. Set aside to dry in the sun for a day.
In a pan over low heart, dry-fry the mustard seeds, fenugreek and fennel separately. Leave to cool before grinding each spice into a coarse powder. Rub the sun-dried mango with each of the spices and chilli powder.
Place the mango into an earthen jar and add the oil. Cover the jar with a muslin cloth and place in a sunlit place for 5-6 days.
After the mango has been left to sit 5-6 days, stir the contents once a day for 2 weeks to ensure that the mango pieces are always in contact with the oil. Add more oil as necessary.
The pickle is ready for serving after the 2 weeks. Dish out and garnish with garlic cloves. Serve at room temperature.