Pickle is a preserved food found in most cultures. It will take different forms but usually uses salt or sugar to preserve vegetables for long periods of time. Some pickle, if it is protected from moisture, can stay good for a year. Common pickle we eat in the US include sauerkraut, miso, olives and kimchee. In fact, the pickled cucumber or the gherkin, as we know it, originated in India. India is the birthplace of the cucumber and the pickle.
Pickle in India is often made with mango (unripe or ripe) lime, carrot, or cucumber. It can be made with just about anything including the crème de la crème of pickle, mixed pickle, which has a bit of this and that.
Pickle in India is a condiment, a spicy condiment that is very strong in flavor and can be found on most tables. It is good for the gut because it is filled with bacteria that fill the colon with the proper flora and fauna to keep you healthy and feeling free.
I eat pickle with everything, vegetables, bread, rice, raw cucumber and I have even tried it with papayas and banana! So good. You have to be ready for the strong and dynamic flavor when you eat pickle; it is very salty, very hot, and full of unique flavors including mustard seed, asafetida, fenugreek, chili powder, turmeric and salt.
Go buy some pickle. In Baltimore, Hex Ferments makes some great stuff at Belvedere Market. I don’t know if they have Indian pickle but maybe they will whip up a batch? Any pickle will do, put it on your plate and give your soul some love.