MEETHA NIMBOO ACHAAR (lemon pickle, about 6 cups)

 Condiments, pickles, lemon pickle with dates (meetha nimboo achaar) 1  Condiments, pickles, lemon pickle with dates (meetha nimboo achaar) 3 (2)

6 large (2 pounds) lemons

½ cup kosher salt

2 tablespoons cumin seeds, crushed

2 tablespoons black peppercorns, crushed

1 teaspoon ajowan seeds or 1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 cup fresh lemon juice (from 4 to 5 juicy lemons)

3-1/2 cups sugar

20 dried whole hot red chili pods

¾ cup (4 ounces) California pitted dates, sliced into julienne strips

  1. Cut lemons into eighths or 1/8 inch thick slices. Carefully remove seeds and discard.  Put lemons into a 3-quart microwave-safe casserole.  Add salt, cumin, pepper and ajowan, toss well and cover with lid.  Cook at 100% power in a 650 to 700 watt carousel oven for 4 minutes (or until lemon looks slightly limp and turns dull yellow).
  1. Remove from oven, transfer lemon slices with a slotted spoon to a bowl and reserve. Add lemon juice and sugar to the casserole and mix well.  Cook, uncovered, at 100% power for 20 minutes (or until the solution turns thick and syrupy – watch carefully, mixture has tendency to boil over and make a mess of your oven)Remove from the oven.
  1. Add lemon slices and their accumulated juices, pepper pods and dates and mix well. Cook, uncovered, at 100% power for 4 minutes (or until contents are bubbling hot)Remove from oven.  Spoon lemon slices into sterilized jars.  When completely cool, cover with the lid.
  1. The pickle will keep well, stored in a covered container, for a year at room temperature.


from Julie Sahni, The Moghul Microwave

Leave a Reply