Pickles of Jammu
Pickles are very important part of an Indian meal, enhances the taste of the meal and increases the satisfaction after every meal.
Pickle is a spicy preparation and one of the most important accompaniments for the main dish that are most often made from certain varieties of vegetables, fruits and meat that are marinated in brine(salt and water) or edible oils along with various spices. The most common spices that go into the pickles are ingredients like asafoetida, red chili powder, turmeric, fenugreek. Salt is generally used both for taste and for its preservative properties.
As per the legend and history books depicting life style of Royal Dogra families, who ruled the state between 1846-1947, wives of Dogra warriors teased the taste buds of their husbands by cooking special dishes on their return from the battleground and won their hearts by displaying their culinary skills.
Pickles, specially prepared by the wives of Dogra rulers were preserved for longer durations and acquired special place in the Royal Kitchen.
Renowned Dogri writers and lyricists have also portrayed the theme of long separation of women from their husbands in the Dogri folk songs giving detailed accounts of how tasty food brought them together at the end of long battles Dogra rulers fought to extend the boundaries of their princely state of Jammu and Kashmir.
Since those days Jammu offers a wide variety of pickles. Most common of the Indian pickles are the Mango Pickle and the lemon pickle, but Jammu boasts of authentic pickles that are made from vegetables like Mango, Lemon, Kadam (कढ़म), Kasrod(कसरोड़), Nandru (नंदरू), Lasooda (लसूड़ा), Tyou(टयोऊ), Tarad(तल्ड), Gaलgal(गलगल), Jimikand(जिमीकंद), Green and Red chillies, Potatoes, Radish, Carrot, Beans and list goes on.
Even using the same main ingredients, Indian pickles come in a wide variety of flavors due to differences in the spices used and preparation techniques. A mango pickle from South India may taste very different from one made in North India. In the southern states, sesame oil is generally preferred, while mustard oil is generally preferred in northern states for making pickles.
Pickles made by traditional methods contain Lactobacillus, produced by fermentation in brine (salt and water). Pickles made using vinegar do not contain Lactobacillus. Lactobacillus makes traditional pickles probiotic. Supermarket pickles which are not home-made are generally not fermented but preserved in vinegar, and thus don’t have the probiotic, enzymatic value of home-made fermented pickles. Vinegar however can help lower blood sugar levels by reducing the breakdown of carbohydrates so the carbs are absorbed less and not all converted to sugar.
The nutritional value of fruits and vegetables in pickles is low, as the process of drying pickles in sunlight causes nutrient loss.