Seasonal fruits and vegetables are preserved in every possible manner. Fruits are preserved in a fancy manner. Murabba the Indian style if fruit preservation is known in every part of the world. Winter melon is the star in this category, though now every seasonal fruit is turned into Murabba. This mango ought to call for this Raw mango Murabba, which has strings of memory attached to it for me.
Murabba is believed to have been travelled from the Central Asian kitchen, precisely from Turkey. The Royal Turk kitchens produced “rub” and “Murabba” which were thicker than the western styled jams. These were also prepared and consumed for many health aspects too. Fruits were cleaned and rubbed with sugar and spices and were sun-dried so that it can be preserved till the next season.
Things took a leap when this knowledge got transferred to India. It got transformed into a spiced and rich sweet preserve that possibly has as many revile it as well as flavor it. For me and my family, Murabba is a much liked fruit preserve. Pineapple Murabba is the dearest one, but this spiced and sweet raw mango one is as favorite. The distinct feature of this mango preserve is that it can be accompanied a whole lot of accompaniments for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The subtle spiciness, tanginess of the raw mangoes, sweetness of the sugar and sourness of the vinegar, all together make this a distinctive fruit preserve.
I have used medium sized raw mangoes from Srilanka. Frankly I don’t know the name of these mangoes. But this mangoes have sharp and a sedating smell. I felt this is something similar to the Moovandan mangoes found in our region. I opted for the raw ones which were just on the verge of turning into the early stages of ripening. Peel the skin off without any greens remaining. Cut the mangoes into fairly medium cubes with the seed shell on. Wash and drain till dry. Selecting th correct textured mangoes are very crucial in this recipe.
I have used a mix of raw sugar and jaggery syrup to make a healthy Murabba. There are people who make solely with jaggery or normal refined sugar. This all depend on one’s personal preference. In the regular preserve, the amount of sugar taken is equal to that of the mangoes. I have reduced it and made it as healthy as possible The syrup should be glazy and thick. Addition of the spices like ginger, cinnamon and cloves helps in adding flavor as well as balancing it. All the spices should be in a subtle nature with out overpowering the raw mangoes flavor.
Vinegar is one ingredient which totally balances this preserve as well aids in cutting short the sweetness of this dish. Watch out when adding vinegar, the pungent smell and flavor of vinegar should not be felt or over power the dish. It’s always safer to add vinegar in batches. Keep tasting, every time when you add every ingredient. Finally bloomed saffron can be added to get that richness for the dish and to enhance the golden orange color.
We usually have this with aloo parathas, or spread it on a toast or make it into a roll for tiffin. This is also best when combined with pathiris dunked in coconut milk. One of the best ways to preserve mangoes and enjoy it through the year. I also add it to curries so that mango can be relished in every possible way. I hope you all will like it the same way as I do.
Peel and cut the mangoes with the seed shell. Wash and drain dry the cut mangoes and set aside.
In a heavy bottomed pan, add the sugar, molasses, ginger and two tablespoons vinegar along with 1 cup water. Let it simmer until the sugar is completely dissolved and thickened slightly.
Add the mangoes at this stage and cost with the sugar syrup. Adjust the sourness at this time adding more vinegar.
Mix up and cook covered for 5 MTS until the mangoes are cooked and soft but firm. Take out the lid and cook until the sugar syrup starts to thicken. Add rest of the ingredients at this time along with salt. Balance all the flavors during this period. Cook further for 5-7 minutes until you get the see the glazed syrup.
Finally add the bloomed saffron and simmer on low flame till the saffron water is absorbed and blended with the mangoes. Take out from the stove and allow it to cool down completely.
Keep sterilized bottles ready. Transfer the cooled Murabba and seal it and keep for a day. Keep small portions in another container for daily use. This can be stored for months.