Savouring the tradition of home-made pickles

Savouring the tradition of home-made pickles
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Savouring the tradition of home-made pickles. The rich tradition of preparing mango pickle (avakkai pacchaadi) at home is still popular among households in the city.

The rich tradition of preparing mango pickle (avakkai pacchaadi) at home is still popular among households in the city. In the last couple of weeks, people have been thronging in large numbers to the Monda Market, Mir Alam Mandi, New Bowenpally Market and Kothapet Market, for buying raw mangoes. The season for mak¬ing pickles usually starts after Ugadi.

Hygiene is religiously followed while preparing pickles at home. People take a shower, wear clean clothes and sterile the vessels, ladles, plates and jars, used in the preparation. The right quality of raw mangoes and the required combination of ingredients like mus¬tard seed powder, red chilli powder, turmeric, garlic, fenugreek, salt, sesame oil etc, is used to lend the perfect taste and aroma for the pickle.

The common variety of man¬goes preferred for pickles are Naatu Kaya, Neelam, Telia Gulabilu and Jalal. People exclusively allot time to go to markets in the city, pick out perfect mangoes and other ingredients. Making pickles requires sheer skill to ensure proper preservation for the entire season along with ensuring a good flavour and taste. Generally eld¬erly women in the house pass on their expertise to make pickles which is probably a reason why the taste of home-made pickles lingers on.

Anu Radha Bai (60), one of the leading mango sellers in Monda Market for the past 40 years, said, “My grand-mother used to sell mangoes to the British Army personnel and their families who were headquartered at the Can¬tonment area. Now there are around 60 shops of raw mango vendors at the Monda Market and they are doing brisk business. We are left with Rs 500 every day after deducting all the expenses. We buy 10 to 15 bags of mangoes at wholesale rates from Charminar which contains around 150 to 200 pieces. We need to sell the entire stock within two days before it ripens or turn yellowish in colour.”

T Dhana Laxmi (85), a senior resident of Teachers Colony, East Maredpally, said, "It is our family’s tradition to prepare avakkai pacchaadi and maangaya at home. Since childhood, I never found a better substitute to the taste of home-made pickles. Since the cost of mangoes and ingredi-ents has shot up, we now purchase only 25 mangoes instead of 50. It gives the real mouth-watering taste and extreme satisfaction, hap¬piness to all of us."

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