Category Archives: Raita, Relishes and Pickles

How To Make Lemon Pickle

One of the most popular achars (pickles) is a lemon pickle.

I have seen my mom make various achars/pickles and enjoyed them when I was young. Recently I learned that lemons are highly alkaline and good for digestion. So my taste buds prompted me to try this tantalizing recipe for myself. The traditional flavor is back in a new form!

To make it healthier, I’ve reduced the salt, sugar, and oil . I am sure you will love it too.


  • 5 lemon cut into cubes
  • 5 lemon squeezed into juice
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 tsp cumin & fenugreek seeds (roasted and crushed)
  • 1 tsp sugar (or more to taste)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp turmeric

For Tampering:

  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 1 tsp ginger paste
  • 1 tsp garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
  • Pinch of astofedia

How to make:

1. Cut the lemons into cubes. Set aside.Cut Lemons


2. Store lemon cubes. Add salt and turmeric. Shake it properly  so it is coated with salt evenly.

store in a jar

store in a jar



3. Store and stir evenly so lemon pieces starts to get soften and tender to touch. Repeat this step for fifteen days.

4. Take lemon pieces out in a bowl , add spices, add sugar, and temper with oil. Mix them properly and store in a clean air tight container.

Lemon pickle is ready to serve with your meals. Great news about lemon pickle is that as it ages it is more tasty. Enjoy!

Lemon pickle/achar

Lemon pickle/achar

Vegan Cole Slaw

Vegan Cole slaw

cabbage,bell pepper

Vegan Cole Slaw


Cabbage is one of the healthiest vegetables. It is full of vitamins and anti oxidants.

This is a simple quick recipe of cabbage you will sure to love.


1/4 small head of green cabbage

1 fresh green Serrano chiles, seeded

1/4 large red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded and cut into thin strips

1 tbsp of dry peanuts crushed

2 tbsp of fresh cilantro chopped finely

1 tsp sea salt

1 tsp lime juice

2 tbsp canola oil

1 tsp mustard seeds

1/4 tsp turmeric

cabbage, cilantro, bell pepper


 How to prepare:

1. Place the half cabbage on cutting board. Remove the core and tough rib from the cabbage.

2. Slice as thin as possible and place it in a large bowl.

3. Slice the chiles and red bell pepper into thin strips.

4. Add them into a bowl.

5. Add salt, lime juice, cilantro and ground peanuts powder.


6. Heat the oil in a small skillet over medium high heat. Add mustard seeds and let it pop about 30 seconds.

7. Remove the skillet from heat and add turmeric.



8. Pour the heated oil over the mixture of cabbage. It is a good idea to wipe clean the oil from skillet with little cabbage shreds.

9. Mix the cabbage evenly so it coats every shred with mustard and oil.

This Nutty, citrus flavor slaw is ideal as salad course or as an accompaniment to traditional meal.


Carrots, red cabbage can be added at any time.

Have you tried any other way Cabbage salad , let me know in your comments!


Cool Cucumber Raita

Cucumber Raitha

       Raita is a healthy compliment to any meal.  A typical meal is not complete without raita.  Raita is made of yogurt combined with different vegetables and/or fruits. The combination of Yogurts’ probiotics and  fresh cucumber with vitamins has a soothing affect on the digestive system against the highly seasoned foods. Variations can be made by substituting fruits and other vegetables.

Cooking  Time: 15 Minutes
Cooking Level: Very Easy
Servings: 4

AO = Anti-Oxidant

GF = Gluten Free, 

HF = High Fiber, 

HP = High Protein

J = Jain, LS = Low Sugar


1. Three cups of plain yogurt (home made or bought in stores)

2. Garden Cucumbers
3. Green Chili Chopped
4. 1/4 teaspoon salt to taste
5. 1/2 teaspoon of sugar
6. Garnish: chopped cilantro, Crushed mustard seeds, roasted crushed cumin seeds


1. In a bowl, whip yogurt with a whisk
2. Grate Cucumbers. Drain excess water
3. Roast cumin seeds and crush them with a mortar and pestle
4. Crush mustard seeds with mortar and pestle
5. Mix all the ingredients
6. Garnish with cilantro
7. Keep in refrigerator. Serve with your favorite food
Enjoy with any meal. Can be used as  salad dressing. Check our recipes for tomato and onion raitha

Nutrition Facts are for Entire Recipe.
Divide by 4 for Single Serving.

Health benefits of Cucumber

  • It is one of the very low calories vegetable; provides just 15 calories per 100 g. It contains no saturated fats or cholesterol. Cucumber peel is a good source of dietary fiber that helps reduce constipation, and offers some protection against colon cancers by eliminating toxic compounds from the gut.
  • It is a very good source of potassium, an important intracellular electrolyte. Potassium is a heart friendly electrolyte; helps reduce blood pressure and heart rates by countering effects of sodium.
  • It contains unique anti-oxidants in good ratios such as ß-carotene and α-carotene, vitamin-C, vitamin-A, zea-xanthin and lutein. These compounds help act as protective scavengers against oxygen-derived free radicals and reactive oxygen species (ROS) that play a role in aging and various disease processes.
  • Cucumbers have mild diuretic property probably due to their high water and potassium content, which helps in checking weight gain and high blood pressure.
  • They are surprisingly have high amount of vitamin K, provides about 17 µg of this vitamin per 100 g. Vitamin-K has been found to have potential role in bone strength by promoting osteotrophic (bone mass building) activity. It also has established role in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease patients by limiting neuronal damage in their brain.

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Raw Green Tomatoes Subji or Pickle

Autumn is Here!!  My vegetable garden is almost done for the season:(
If you are left with plenty of raw green tomatoes or If you love green tomatoes!! Here is the recipe with raw green tomatoes.

Cooking Level: Very easy
Preparation Time: Five minutes

Green Tomatoes 

Cooking Time: Ten minutes


4 medium size raw green tomatoes
1 Tsp of Sesame seeds
1/2 tsp Mustard seeds
1/4 tsp Cayenne pepper
1 tsp Brown sugar or Jaggery/Molasses
1/4 tsp Turmeric
1 tsp each Coriander & Cumin powder 
1 tsp oil

Salt to taste


  1. Microwave diced tomatoes in microwave oven for 3-4 minutes. Set aside.
  2. In a small saucepan, heat the oil on a medium high heat.
  3. Add mustard and sesame seeds. Add jaggery/molasses or brown sugar and stir until sugar turns brown in color.
  4. Add salt ,coriander, cumin powder, turmeric, cayenne pepper and tomatoes.
  5. Cook for 4-5 minutes till it mixes well.
  6. You can note that it will change color to golden yellow.and now its ready to serve. Tomato subji can be stored as pickle for a week in a  refrigerator.    Also, you can make green tomatoes Enchilada sauce aka Verde sauce. Salsa or  fried tomatoes. Enjoy!!
 Did you know!!  green tomatoes are Very low in saturated fat,  No cholesterol,  High in dietary fiber,  High in iron,  High in manganese,  High in magnesium, High in niacin, Very high in pantothenic acid, High in phosphorus, Very high in potassium,  High in thiamin, Very high in vitamin A, High in vitamin B6, Very high in vitamin C. 

Smart Food: Mediterranean Pickles

I would like to begin a series on “Smart Food.”  I would love it if you would comment at the bottom, “like” the recipe on Facebook and/or “tweet” it!
“Condiments” are called “Kachumber” in my native language. They are a must to any meal and can enhance a dull dish in an instant. The homemade variety will always have your own personal touch. Economically, those made from your own kitchen are cheaper than those bought at the store. And, of course, they are very flavorful. Personally, I am a big fan of condiments that are made at home because they have less sugar, salt and preservatives. Homemade pickles are a great example of this.

Here is a quick recipe for Mediterranean Pickles:


2   Medium Raw beets, washed and cut lengthwise
2  Medium Turnips, washed and cut lengthwise
2   Cloves Garlic, peeled and cut
2-3 Slices Jalapeño Peppers and/or Red Peppers, whole
Salt to Taste
1/2 Tsp Sugar and 1/2 lemon or White Vinegar
1   Medium Onion, cut lengthwise or a few very small onions
1/2 Tsp Cumin seeds, roasted

Mix them together and refrigerate it.


  • These will last for two weeks. 
  • Great with sandwiches or regular meal.


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Raw Mango Pickle

Raw Green Mangoes with Homemade Pickle

Mouth-watering pickles are a must all over India. Pickles are the comfort food of rich and poor alike. There are many different varieties that are readily available all over America and around the world. Sweet ones are mild in flavor with a tangy taste and have their own place within a meal.  Spicy, salty, tart and tangy are very common flavors. I just love the taste of khatta achar which means “sour pickle.”
A meal is not a meal without achar” which means “pickle.”  Here is a quick recipe of Aam Ka Achar which means Mango Pickle.


1    Small Raw or Green Mango
1    Tsp Achar Masala (pickle) to taste
1    Tsp Mustard Oil or Vegetable Oil


  1. Wash the mango and dry it.
  2. Cut the mangoes into cubes.  Small cubes will work better. 
  3. In a jar place all the cut mangoes. 
  4. Add achar masala and mix together.
  5. With a spoon, squeeze all of the pieces down into the jar so there is no air.
  6. Now pour in 2 tbsp of mustard oil so it covers the pieces.
  7. Stir it twice daily, once in the morning and once at night. 
  8. Leave it outside for two days.
  9. Then refrigerate in a airtight container. 
  10. The Pickle should last at least for few weeks.

Easy to make and my favorite with khicahdi!


  • Achar masla is made of fenugreek seed powder, salt, red chili powder and oil. It should also be available at Indian grocery stores near you. 
  • Oil and masala can be added according to taste.

Raw mango pickle with crunchy mathi

Health Benefits of Mangos

Improves Digestion

Mangoes are very much beneficial for people suffering from acidity and its enzymes helps to relieve indigestion problems. The Bio-active elements such as Esters, Terpenes and Aldehydes present in mango aids to easy digestion.

Lowers Cholesterol

High level of soluble dietary fiber, Pectin and Vitamin C present in mangoes helps to lower serum cholesterol levels specifically Low-Density Lipoprotein (LDL) Cholesterol.

Improves Concentration and Memory Power

Mangoes are useful to children who lack concentration in studies as it contains Glutamine acid which is good to boost memory and keep cells active.

For Treating Acne

Mango helps in clearing clogged pores that causes acne. Just slice the mango into very thin pieces and keep it on your face for 10 to 15 min and then take bath or wash your face. Use warm water for washing your face.

High Iron for Women

It’s a known fact that Mango is rich in Iron. People who suffer from anemia can regularly take mango along with their dinner. Generally women after menopause become weak and they should take mangoes and other fruits rich in iron. Pregnant ladies can also take mangoes occasionally as their body needs iron and calcium during that time. Too much consumption of mangoes should be avoided during pregnancy. If you have generally taken lots of mangoes right from your childhood then you can consume mangoes when you are pregnant as it wont affect your body.

For Diabetes

Mango is slowly gaining new acclaim as diabetes fighter. Earlier there was a myth that people with diabetes should not eat mangoes but that’s not true. Not only the fruit the leaves also fight against diabetes. Before going to bed put some 10 or 15 mango leaves in warm water and close it with lid. Next day morning filter the water and drink it in empty stomach. Do this regularly.

Prevents Cancer and Heart diseases

High amount of antioxidants are present in mangoes. So mango when consumed regularly fights against cancer and other heart diseases. As mentioned earlier it also lowers cholesterol.

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Amla Achar – Sweet Pickle

Some days you want to eat something special and tasty. Amla is a popular Indian gooseberry that is very good in winter.  It is very popular as a winter snack for its nutritional value and is eaten as jams and in other forms, like bars, as well. Not only it is tasty, but it is very high in antioxidants and Vitamin C. It is available in the frozen foods section. Amla Pickle can be done in two ways.  One is done spicy and with oil.  The other recipe is for Sweet Pickles.  Here is a quick recipe of Sweet Amla Pickle.

Preparation Time: 30 minutes
Recipe Type: Vegan, Jain


4    Cups Frozen Amla (boil and seed so it will separate into wedges)
2-3 Cups Sugar (Substitute: Agave Nectar)
5-6 Cloves
5-6 Cinnamon Sticks
Few Strands Saffron
1    Tsp Cardamom Seeds


  1. In a medium sauce pan on low heat, boil the 2 cups of sugar with 1 1/2 cups of water.
  2. Add saffron strands, cloves, cinnamon sticks and cardamom seeds.
  3. Once water is boiling, add ambla pieces into syrup.
  4. Stir with a wooden spatula.
  5. Turn off stove and let it cool.
  6. Once cool, pour into a container and refrigerate.


  • It stays good for two months. 
  • I enjoy it with warm Indian tortilla – rotis.  
  • I am sure you will enjoy the sweet pickle with your meal also.

Serving Size is for 1/2 Serving.
The health benefits of Amla

  • Hair care Amla is used in many hair tonics. It enriches hair growth and hair pigmentation. It strengthens roots of hair, maintains color and luster. Eating fresh fruit or applying its paste on hair roots improves hair growth and color. Amla oil is very popular in India as it serves as a very good hair growth booster thereby preventing hair loss.
  • Eye care: Taking Gooseberry juice with honey is good for improving eyesight. It improves nearsightedness and cataract. It reduces intraocular tension.
  • Diabetes: Gooseberry contains chromium. It has a therapeutic value in diabetics. Indian Gooseberry or Amla stimulate the isolated group of cells that secrete the hormone insulin. Thus it reduces blood sugar in diabetic patient.
  • Heart disease: Gooseberry strengthens heart muscles. So heart pumps blood flawless throughout the body.
  • Infection: Due t o its antibacterial and astringent attributes the Indian Gooseberry protects against infection. It improves body resistance.
  • Diarrhea and dysentery: Due to its strong, cooling and laxative properties Gooseberry is useful for remedies for diarrhea and dysentery. It is a great relief for gastric syndrome and hyperchlorhydria (burning sensation inabdomen).
  • Improving appetite: Consuming Gooseberry powder with butter and honey before meal improves appetite. It helps in balancing Nitrogen level and thus increases weight in a healthy way.
  • Anti-aging: Amla prevents health related hyperlipidaemia through attenuating oxidative stress in the ageing process.
  • The fresh fruit contains more than 80% water, protein, minerals, carbohydrates and fiber. It is also used as remedies for fever, liver disorder, indigestion, anemia, urinary problems, respiratory problems, cerebral, gastro and cardiovascular illness. Gooseberry lowers cholesterol level. It increases red blood cell production and strengthens teeth and nails. So the Indian gooseberry or Amla as a fresh fruit or juice or in dried form is much good for your health.

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Fresh & Mild Tomato Salsa

This salsa comes from an old recipe called “Tom’s Tacos.” You can make this any time when you want a fresh, slightly spicy, slightly sweet tomato salsa.

Cooking Preparation Time: 15 Minutes
Cooking Difficulty Level: Easy
Recipe Type: Vegetarian


 1    Can Stewed Tomatoes
 1    Tsp Sugar
 3/4 Tsp Oregano
 1/4 Tsp Salt
 1/8 Tsp pepper
 1/4 Tsp Hot Sauce
 1/4 Cup Green Pepper
 1/4 Cup Chopped Onion

How to Prepare:

  1. Put all ingredients into a Cuisinart.
  2. Mix until blended.
  3. Refrigerate for coolness or eat right away!

Cucumber Relish

This recipe is a traditional Gujarati recipe of Gujarat.  This is very easy, quick to make and tantalizing to the taste buds.  Cucumber relish perks up any dull meal in minutes.


1 Cup Garden or Very Thin Fresh Cucumber cut lengthwise
1 Tsp Fresh Lemon Juice
1 Tsp Coriander Powder
1 Tsp Cumin Powder
1 TBsp Fresh Crushed Mustard Seeds
(Crush mustard seeds with a rolling pin on cutting board)
Salt to taste

How To Prepare:

  1. Add all the ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Add salt right before serving.
Send me a comment how do you rate this recipe?  Thumbs up or down? I will be happy to find out.

Nutrition Facts based on entire, original recipe.

Onion & Tomato Raita

This side dish is tasty in itself. It is in category of relishes and called Raita.  I love this recipe, it is very quick, original and very easy to make. 

Cooking Difficulty Level: Easy
Preparation Time: 15 Minutes


1    Carrot, shredded
1    Medium Onion, chopped finely
1    Small Tomato, chopped
Cup Yogurt, plain
Salt to taste
1    Tsp Urad Dal
Few Curry Leaves – limdo
1    Green Pepper, seeded & chopped
Few Coriander Leaves, chopped
2    Tsp Oil

How to Prepare:

  1. Stir plain yogurt very well.
  2. Add salt, carrots, tomatoes and onions.
  3. Heat the oil in a small frying pan 
  4. Add curry leaves and urad dal. 
  5. Once it starts to roast, add it on top of yogurt.

This is a healthy dish. I always make it with spinach rice. You’ve got to taste it to belive it!