South Indian Style Lemon Pickle

This is the basic lemon pickle recipe that is a staple in most Indian households. There are probably hundreds of variations of this preserve from the many regional cuisines in India. This one is a simple one made in Tamil Nadu. Goes excellent with the ubiquitous tambrahm cooler aka yogurt rice aka thayir saadam, upma, roti, etc. Versatile. Settles an uneasy stomach in its salted version. Just an amazing pickle.

Benefits Of Lemon Pickle

Lemon Pickle contains tons of nutrients, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Infact Lemon pickle or pickles in general are great source of probiotics (gut friendly bacteria). They are known to aid digestion and constipation problems and help build immunity when consumed moderately.

Serving Suggestions

Lemon Pickle are great with everyday food as side. Its a great way to add flavour to any dish. Some of the all time go to favourite combinations are:
  • Curd Rice with a side of pickle
  • Dal-Rice with pickle and salad
  • Aloo Paratha or for that matter any Partha with pickle and yogurt. 
  • Sabzi, roti and pickle.
  • Pulav and pickle. 

Storage And Care

Allow the pickle to cool completely and keep it refrigerated in either glass or ceramic jars. I would suggest transferring some portion enough for a few days into a smaller container and using that to minimise contamination and spoiling. Also use a clean dry spoon every single time.

This pickle is not made traditionally and though we have used the preservatives like oil and salt, it's prone to getting spoiled quickly hence need to observe these precautions.

As long as you follow these, this pickle will last you for weeks or months depending on your consumption.


Ingredients:
500 gms lemon, cut into small bits,
3 tsp red chilli powder,
3 tsp mustard seeds powder,
1 heaped tsp turmeric powder,
1 tsp fenugreek + asafoetida powder,
1 tsp mustard seeds
2-3 tsp salt or as per taste
200 ml oil - I have used groundnut oil


Method:
  1. Place the cut lemons in a steel or glass bowl, add the turmeric powder and 1 tsp salt. Mix well and set aside for 2 days in the fridge making sure you give it a mix every day.
  2. Heat oil in a kadhai. As it reaches the smoking point, turn off the heat. Add mustard seeds and leave the oil to cool down completely.
  3. Add the masalas to the cooled oil to avoid burning. Be patient 😊
  4. Add the marinated lemon into the cooled oil and mix well.
  5. Store them in clean glass jars ensuring the oil floats up and forms a layer. The oil acts as a preservative.
  6. Keep the jar in the sun everyday and give the jar a good shake. 
  7. Lemon Pickle will be ready to use about 1 week.

Important Tips

  • Always use the freshest of lemons. When buying choose lemons which are juicy, avoid lemons which have become discoloured from outside.
  • When making the pickle, ensure there is no moisture on the knife, chopping board, bowl and the jar.
  • You can sun dry the jar before you add the lemon pickle in it.
  • Keep in sun for 4 to 5 days or till the pickle has become soft and matured.
  • Everyday, shake the jar well.
  • Do not reduce the quantity of oil, it acts as a preservative. 

Did you make this recipe?
Please let me know how it turned out for you! Leave a comment below and share a picture on Instagram with the hashtag #thefitdotme

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