The Mango Season

When I ate it the first time, it sent my senses tingling. The taste buds on my tongue burst with happiness and joy ! I remember playing an important part of the making process, “the official taster” and that too with huge dollops of home made butter ( venna/makkhan). I have very fond memories of it. Amma always used it as treat to lure me to eat my beans and veggies. There were days when I would throw a tantrum and not eat even though I was hungry, just to eat it.

My heart melts and my knees buckle whenever I lay my eyes on it , such is my love for it. I have decided to believe that I cant live without my share of it. I have to indulge in it at least once in a month and I keep going until the next time.

Do you have a love for any such dish ? Do share your experience with me . I’d love to know your thoughts on your favorite dishes.

Amulya Malladi has rekindled my love for this dish again, I dreamt nothing but of mangoes when i read the book ” The Mango Season “for the first time. There was so much common about avakaya and the way we pickled it , except for the gossip being different 😀 . This one has humour and touching the soul and heart when we are taking this journey with Priya in The Mango Season.

I followed the avakaya recipe largely but used sesame oil and added the fenugreek seeds just like amma .

Making the Avakaya has always been a tradition in my house, Amma always checked for an auspicious day ( I dont know why she did that ) and kick started spring by making a temporary pickle and then worked on the actual one.

We would get cans of gingelly (sesame) oil from Vijayawada, kilos of red chillies from warangal and guntur. Nanna would handpick the chillies (I repeat handpick and remove the stalks here to emphasize the importance given to avakaya in my house) and decide which ones would go to the mill for the chili powder. The same process was followed for fenugreek and mustard seeds.

Amma would take the day off and both my parents would go to the monda market and pick the mangoes. Back at home, nanna would cut the mangoes and amma would mix the pickles. She would almost spend a week on mixing, checking and tweaking it to our liking. This was the avakaya week for us.

Then came the part of canning/bottling them. My mother would can it in batches and give most of it to family and friends. That was our way of telling them how much we cherish their presence in our lives.

I have been looking for the right mangoes and haven’t been able to find the right ones for pickling, I didnt find the best ones, but these worked just fine…

I am sending this to “This Book Makes Me Cook ” hosted by the lovely Bhags ! Thank you Bhags for hosting such a wonderful event. It brought back great memories !


5 cups unripe green mangoes pieces

2 teaspoons of turmeric

3 cups of gingelly . sesame oil

1 cup of salt

1cup of red chilli powder

1 cup of mustard powder

1 teaspoon of fenu greek powder

1 tablespoon of fenugreek seeds

Method :

Wash the mango thoroughly and pat dry, make sure that there is no water left , it has to be thoroughly dry. Cut into 6-8 pieces

Add all the ingredients and mix well and let it sit for atleast 3 days, Check after 3 days and see if there is any tweaking to be done to your liking. It tastes best atleast after a month !

Avakaya with Indira’s Pappula Podi

My idea of comfort food is Mudda pappu , some fresh home made avakaya with clarified ghee… What is yours ??

15 thoughts on “The Mango Season

  1. Uma says:

    mmm. avakai! very good pickle. Yummy! I too like avakai with mudda pappu and ghee. That’s the best combination.

  2. bhags says:

    The pickle looks so delicious, and yes the book is real good…..i like the way the author merges food and the story…she did the same in serving crazy with curry….

  3. Siri says:

    monda market?.. did u say that.. OMG.. enni rojula taruvata I actually heard abt it Dee..:D I think prati telugu intlo avakaaya pettatam ante pedda pandaga.. ma ammma kooda manchi roju choosi start chesedi and she used to make avakaya for 5 households – for all of my mavayyas, attayas, pinnins and my mom. Phew! Great post Dee.. u reminded me of my childhood days!


  4. Madhuram says:

    More than the recipe, I love your narration Dee. You are definitely a good writer. Hmm….I envy you!!!

    My avva also used to look for an auspicious date for pickling the avakaya. The pickles look very authentic Dee. Waiting for your carrot and cauliflower avakaya also.

    I also have some awards for you in my blog. Check it out.

  5. Dee says:

    Thanks all for the wonderful comments , It is indeed a mouthwatering pickle
    @Suganya : Got them from artesia , CA , although the hard shell is much tender than it should be… i could break it with my hand..

  6. Usha Chinmay says:

    Dear Dee, me saying thank you for this post would be such an understatement because after my grandmother passed away i was so dependent on others to give me some of this pickle and many of them went off-mark on the taste of it to match that of the village (a small one near vijayawada). But since you posted this one and I luckily came by it (i chose this from many) and tried this one out, it was like bull’s eye for us…its been almost three annual successful batches so far made using this…and this recipe will go with me for the rest of my years…thank you.

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