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Sweet and Sour Date-Lemon Pickle

Ingredients

INGREDIENTS

  • 1. Large lemon – 4 If you are using small lemon / lime, use 8 – 10
  • Sugar – 1.5 tsp
  • Salt – To taste
  • 2. Gingelly oil / nallenna – 2 tbsp
  • Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
  • Dry red chilies – 2 – 3
  • Ginger – 1/2 inch thinly sliced
  • Garlic – 10 cloves sliced or halved if large
  • Green chilies – 3 – 4 slit (optional)
  • 3. Dates – 20 finely chopped
  • 4. Kashmiri chilly powder – 2 – 2.5 tbsp
  • Fenugreek powder – 1/4 tsp
  • Asafetida / hing – 2 pinches
  • Sugar – 1 tsp
  • 5. Hot water – 1/2 cup
  • Vinegar – 2 tbsp
  • 6. Salt – To taste

Instructions

DIRECTIONS

  • Heat 1 tbsp gingelly oil in a pan. Add the lemons and stir until their skin becomes soft, turning them on all sides. It takes about 5 – 8 minutes. (Alternatively, you can steam the lemons for 8 – 10 minutes until they turn soft). Cool them completely. Cut into 8 pieces. Transfer into a glass jar or a bowl. Add enough salt and 1.5 tsp sugar to the lemon pieces. Mix well and set aside for 1 – 2 days or a minimum of 2 hours.
  • Heat 2 tbsp gingelly oil in a deep pan. Splutter mustard seeds and fry dry red chilies. Add sliced ginger, garlic and green chilies. Fry until lightly golden. Next add chopped dates. Cook until soft, about 3 minutes. (Add 1 more tbsp gingelly oil, if required). Bring down the heat to low. Add chilly powder, fenugreek powder, hing and 1 tsp sugar. Saute for a minute. Next add hot water, salt and vinegar. Boil for 2 minutes until thick. Switch off. Set aside to cool. Add the lemon pieces. Combine well. Check for salt. Cool down and transfer to an airtight jar.
  • Heat 1 tbsp oil in a small pan. Cool completely. Pour the cooled oil on top of the pickle. You can have it after 2 – 3 days but it tastes best after 2 – 3 months. Keep refrigerated in order to increase its shelf-life.