Indian gooseberries or amla are regarded as highly beneficial to health in traditional medicine and are widely grown in India. I wanted to have a go at making this amla pickle aka ‘amle ki launji’, a spicy tangy delicacy of northern India, ever since I spotted some fresh ones at our local Asian grocer. This recipe is inspired by Nisha Madhulika
This pickle is not only delicious but exceptionally nutritious due to the addition of jaggery and spices as well as the gooseberries themselves. They’re rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, boosting immunity and they help to maintain gut health, reduce cholesterol in addition to healthy skin, hair and a lean body.
I love my homemade pickles and this one is a new favourite. I like to serve a little with my dal and rice, khichdi or thepla. I’m tempted to use it in a sandwich next.
Amle ki launji – Indian gooseberry pickleCourse: Accompaniment, MainCuisine: IndianDifficulty: Easy
250g Indian gooseberries (Amla)
2 tbsp mustard/ sesame oil (ideally) or sunflower oil.
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 tsp fenugreek seeds
2 dried whole Kashmiri red chillies
a pinch of asafoetida
1 tsp grated ginger
1 tsp turmeric powder
1 tsp coriander powder
3-4 tsp fennel powder
1/2 tsp cumin powder
1/2 tsp garam masala
1 tsp red chilli powder
1 tsp chilli flakes
3/4 tsp black salt
sea salt to taste
- Steam the Indian gooseberries for 10-12 mins. Then let them cool.
- Break the gooseberries into segments by hand.
- In a heavy bottomed pan over a low flame, add the oil.
- When the oil is hot, start by adding the fennel seeds, followed by fenugreek seeds, Kashmiri chillies, asafoetida and grated ginger.
- Next, add the gooseberry segments followed by turmeric powder, coriander powder, fennel powder, cumin powder, garam masala, red chilli powder, chilli flakes, black salt and sea salt to taste.
- Finally add the jaggery. Mix everything together and cook until the jaggery is melted. Once the pickle get runny, cook it for a min or two more until the jaggery sauce thickens. Switch off the flame and let it cool.
- Once cooled, transfer the pickle into a thoroughly dried airtight jar. The pickle will be ready to eat after 2 days when all the whole spices have absorbed enough liquid to soften up. It’ll keep for several months.
- Make sure all the containers and utensils used to make the pickle are absolutely dry. You can dry mixing bowls, spoons and storage containers in the oven at 100 C for 10 mins before preparing this pickle. This will get rid of any bacteria that might contaminate the pickle.
- Please store the pickle in an airtight, moisture-free glass jar to prolong its life.
- Use only a clean and dry steel spoon to remove the pickle from the jar. Failing to do so may spoil the pickle.
- If taken care, this pickle will keep well in the fridge for a year.