Cherry Achar(Pickled Cherry)

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It is the season of berries and cherries 🙂 Some of our friends had gone for cherry picking couple of weeks back. And they shared some of their picks with us too 😉 Well, who wouldn’t enjoy relishing freshly picked cherries..they were spotless and so fresh, that you could eat as many as you can..Well, did you know that eating cherries can put you to sleep?? 😮 Ya, so if you know of someone who finds it difficult to sleep, like DD ;-), give some cherries at night and they will have a sound sleep.

We finished our cherries that our friends had shared with us, the very same day, they gave it to us. But that left us wanting for more fresh cherries. Guess what?!!! We ended up buying a lot more of cherries from the store. And since the expert wasn’t with DD 😛 , he failed to recognize that the cherries he bought were over ripe. They were too many in number too 😦 I didn’t want to waste all those cherries. I had to come up with some innovative idea of using up these cherries, which I would otherwise end up putting in trash!!! So I thought, why not try making some achar with these cherries. It is a good way of preserving the cherries and being Indians, we enjoy eating achar with absolutely anything!!! I loved this pickle and for a change, I made it sweet and sour. Of course, the sweetness from cherries would have been enough, but I had to put some jaggery to bring in that flavor I wanted 🙂 I am glad I could increase the shelf life of those cherries 😉

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INGREDIENTS:

Cherries – 600 gms
Mustard seeds – 1/4 tsp
Fenugreek powder – 1/4 tsp
Curry leaves – 2 strands
Garlic – 15-20 pods, sliced
Green chilli – 2 nos, slit
Red chilli powder – 1 – 1.5 tsp(depending on how spicy you want the pickle to be. I used 1.5 tsp)
Kashmiri red chilli powder – 2.5 tsp
Jaggery(grated) – 2 tsp
Vinegar – 4 tbsp
Oil – 3 tbsp
Salt – to taste (apprx. 1.5-2 tsp)

METHOD:

1. Wash the cherries and wipe them with a kitchen towel to dry them up. Keep aside.
2. Heat oil in a saucepan and put mustard seeds. When the mustard seeds splutter, put curry leaves and let it splutter. Reduce the flame to medium.
3. Put sliced garlic and slit green chillies. Saute till the garlic turns light brown.
4. Now add the fenugreek powder, red chilli powder and kashmiri red chilli powder. Saute for few seconds. Make sure that the red chilli powder doesn’t burn.
5. Add 1 cup of water and let it boil. Add the grated jaggery into the water and let it boil till the jaggery melts.
6. Now put the cherries and salt. Cook in medium high flame, till the cherries soften up and start to tear up easily.
7. Remove from flame and pour the vinegar into the saucepan and give a good mix. At this point, do a taste check and add more salt or vinegar per your taste.
8. After the pickle cools down, transfer it into a jar and store in the refrigerator.

Serve with rice or with absolutely anything whenever you want to have a spiced up side with sweet and sour element!!!

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