In a Pickle?
We think we Indians are a lot into Pickles! No pun intended!!!
Pickles have almost always been the easiest way to make our food a tad more interesting, a little bit better-tasting. Stuck in a hostel with the “mess”y food, or simply under the weather and no appetite. The home made nanima’s pickles aka aachars always came to the rescue. The number of times our mom’s have handed us the plain paratha with a dollop of her pickle to make a full meal beats the number of time we have eaten “the fancy fine dining meal”
So what makes the “Indian Home made Pickles” so universal and so entrenched in our daily food habits. We think it’s lot to do with the fact that these spicy, oily little chunks not just add the bounties of flavours but also are considered so healthy in our culture.
Now we won’t debate the bounty and variety of flavours they have but Healthy? Seriously?
Indian Pickles are centre of plate of Indian Fermented Pallette. Made from the freshest, seasonal veggies and fruits, these are naturally fermented over weeks to naturally get seasoned and healthy. The Vintage Lemon Pickle for instance was kept for years, till the lemons got seasoned in its juices and the added spices. These were “aged” in a “bayyam” or a ceramic pot covered with muslin to have a breathing. Any one falling sick in the household would be given a piece to get back the appetite and have the anti bacterial effects of the aged lemons.
Other examples were the super berries “Amla” which were pickled with salt to encourage the growth of probiotics in your gut, improving your digestion while adding the healthy gooseberries into your diet. It is customary practice in some Indian families to have amla pickle as the first course or an appetizer as it is believed that amla pickle improves digestion. Liver Protection: Apart from benefits such as improved digestion, amla or gooseberry pickle also has hepatoprotective properties.
Traditional recipes like “Garlic Gandhiali” pickle or the Superfood Ginger pickle, or the blood purifier “Karela pickle” are the easiest and tastiest ways of adding a dash of health to your food.
So lets get Nutty and add the Yoginess of Indian Home Made Pickles.