Lesue ka Achaar – Lesua, Lesuda, Gonda or Gunda these little balls have many names though when I got married I had never heard any of these names and I had no idea about their existence on earth. Axat was working in Australia when we got married and then we soon shifted to singapore. So I did not get the chance of sampling Rajasthani dishes after marriage.
One day we were discussing the food that we miss the most and Axat was really sad that he had not been able to taste lesue ka achaar for quite some time. And I was like Lesue What is that?
Axat-The little green round balls which are used in pickles.
I still keep on staring. Suddenly
me– Oh I get it. You mean karonde or maybe teet.
Now I could see that look in Axat’s eyes( where has this girl been living. She does not know what is lesua)
Axat– Everybody knows what is lesua. Where have you been living?
me – There is nothing like Lesua. you are just mixing things up.
And so it went on. In the end, Axat decided that whenever we go back to Jaipur I will be introduced to these precious gems. And I was.
When I tried to make this pickle for the first time I boiled lesua a little longer than necessary and the achaar did not survive for long. This time I have made these under the guidance of my mother-in-law with her exact measurement to avoid another mishap.
what is Lehsua/ lesua
Lesua is an Indian Berry which is available for a very short time from April to June. It is grown mainly in Rajasthan and Gujarat.
Lehsua is called Gum Berry in English
How to make Lesue Ka Achaar
Preparation time: around 30 minutes
cooking time: 10 minutes + 3-4 minutes
you have to keep achaar in the sun for 1-2 hours for 2-3 days.
1 kg lesue
500 gms raw mango pulp ( After removing the skin and seed from 750 gms raw mango)
4 tsp Red chili powder
2 tsp turmeric powder
150 gms salt
1/4 tsp asafoetida (heeng)
to be ground into a coarse mixture:
150 gms fennel seeds
1 1/2 tsp fenugreek seeds(daana methi)
1/2 tsp nigella seeds( kalonji)
mustard oil ( sarson ka tel)approximately 3 cups
To make Lesue Ka Achaar
Remove the lesua from the bunch. The cap should remain intact otherwise Lesua will soak a lot of oil. Wash carefully 2-3 times. meanwhile, put a large pan of water to boil.
Add lesue to hot water. Turn the flame to medium and let the lesua cook for around 10 minutes uncovered. The color of lesua should change to olive green. Switch off the flame. Some of the lesue might have cracks. Drain immediately and let them dry on a neat cotton cloth for some time.
Remove the skin and cut raw mango into very small pieces as shown below.
Heat oil in a pan. Drop a fennel seed to check if the oil is warm enough or not. If the fennel seed starts to float oil is warm enough. Add asafoetida and coarsely ground mixture. Switch off the flame.
Add the raw mango and mix thoroughly.
Now add salt, turmeric and red chili powder to the raw mango.
In the end, add lesue. Mix carefully and thoroughly. let the pickle cool before filling in a sterilized jar with tight lid. You should always store pickles in glass jars.
Storing the Pickle
you might have to adjust the level of oil in the pickle. After filling the jar the oil should reach above the surface. If it is not, heat some oil to the fennel seed test, let it cool completely and add to the pickle. I also had to add oil after keeping it in the sun though there seems a lot of oil in the photo. Lesue should be fully covered in oil.
Don’t worry about the oil as you do not have to eat that. just keep taking achaar from the sides and whatever oil is left in the end after achaar is finished can be used to make achaari aloo or parantha.
Enjoy with puri, parantha, and rice. The pickle keeps good for more than a year. Never use a wet spoon to take the pickle out of the jar.