Wednesday, July 17, 2019

Surplus Management Lesson - Mango Curry

Last month, I went to Bangalore and chanced upon an exhibition of mangoes from Karnataka in Lalbagh. Past lamentations and scruples about glut and leftovers, modest eating, etc, became things of the past. My resolve dissolved and I turned into a greedy pig and a hapless hoarder. (If you were to say greedy and hapless don't go together, your objection might be valid, but really, greed is a weakness, isn't it, so the adjective hapless suits it quite well.)

I ended up with several specimens of this new discovery of mine called Sakkaregutti (Sugar Baby in English). Tiny mangoes that are just about fist-sized or smaller. Juicy little things that you can be done with in one or two mouthfuls. I knew I would not be able to eat so many steadily and needed to find a way to use at least some of them up. One of our friends in Bangalore had served us a curry made of similar mangoes. She said it was based on a Mangalorean dish.

I wanted to try something different so I made this, a sweet and sour curry applying a recipe often used with less exotic protagonists. This is broadly based on the ‘pulusus’ (light tamarind-based gravies) made in Telugu cuisine. The next time I am stuck with more mango, any variety, than I can eat as fruit, this will be one way to dispose of them.

(Serves 4)


Sakkaregutti (or other small fist-sized mangoes), peeled, whole – 10
Tamarind juice – extracted from 3-4 pieces soaked in 2.5 cups of water
Jaggery – ½ tbsp
Turmeric – ½ tsp
Mustard seed – ¾ tsp
Cumin seed – ½ tsp
Dry red chilli – 2, broken
Split, hulled black gram/urad dal – 1 tsp
Crystal asafoetida – ¼ tsp
Curry leaves – 3-4
Salt – ¾ tsp, to begin with
Red chilli powder – ¾ tsp, or to taste
Oil – ½ tbsp
Coriander leaves, to garnish
Heat the oil, temper with the mustard, cumin, red chilli, black gram, asafoetida and curry leaf, in that order as they splutter/turn colour.
Add the peeled, whole mangoes and sauté for a couple of minutes.
Add the tamarind water, salt, chilli powder and cook on medium flame for about eight minutes. Add more water if you think it’s necessary. 
Taste, adjust seasoning if necessary and add the jaggery. Simmer for a few minutes and then turn off the flame. Garnish with chopped coriander.

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