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Mangalore & Malnad Special Pickles

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Mangalore, nestled along the southwestern coast of India, is famed for its vibrant culture, scenic beaches, and age-old traditions. Right on the other side of the mountains, amidst the lush greenery of the Western Ghats in Karnataka lies the Malnad region, renowned for its breathtaking landscapes, forests and wild-life.

But beyond the main courses, a hidden gem lies in the region’s diverse and flavorful pickles. These tangy condiments, known as “Uppinakayi” in Kannada, “Nonche” in Konkani, are an integral part of the Mangalorean and Malnad culinary experience.

One of the most unique offerings is the Appe Midi Pickle. Made with tender “Appe Midi” mangoes, these compact fruits are sun-dried and pickled with a blend of spices like fenugreek, mustard seeds, and red chili powder. The result is a sweet and tangy pickle with a distinct crunch, perfect for complementing seafood dishes.

For a milder option, the Amla Pickle offers a delightful combination of sweet and sour flavors. Gooseberries, also known as amla, are pickled with jaggery, fenugreek, and mustard seeds, resulting in a pickle that is both tangy and slightly sweet. This versatile pickle pairs well with both vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes.

Beyond these popular varieties, Mangalore and Malnad regions boast a treasure trove of other unique pickles. Kanile Pickle, made from tender bamboo shoots, offers a refreshingly earthy flavor. Jackfruit Pickle utilizes the unripe fruit, creating a tangy and slightly sweet condiment. And for those seeking a truly unique experience, the Karanda Pickle, made with wild berries, provides a burst of tartness and a beautiful color.

From Mangalore, for those seafood lovers seeking a fiery kick, the Fish Pickle and Prawns Pickle are a must-try. Freshly caught prawns, mackerel, or sardines are marinated in a fiery masala paste, often featuring ingredients like red chilies, ginger, and garlic. This pungent pickle adds a burst of flavor to rice dishes and dals.

These pickles are not your average store-bought condiments. They are handcrafted using traditional methods passed down through generations, ensuring authenticity in every bite. The process begins with meticulously selecting fresh, seasonal ingredients like mangoes, gooseberries, lemons, and even karonda (wild berries). These are then sun-dried or brined to draw out excess moisture, creating a base for the flavor explosion to come.

Each pickle carries the distinct flavors of the region, offering a glimpse into the vibrant culture and traditions. So, next time you explore Mangalorean or Malnad cuisine, don’t forget to delve into the world of their unique and flavorful pickles.

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