Saturday, May 31, 2014

Avnaas Aambe Saasam(Pineapple Mango Salad)

The name 'Avnaas Aambe Saasam' in Konkani means Pineapple and Mango with Mustard. This is a traditional Mangalorean cold dish prepared with fresh fruits in the summer months when both pineapple and mango are available in abundance. Black, red or green grapes are added for better taste. I grew up in a traditional GSB Konkani family and GSBs make this dish perfectly. GSB wedding and other feast menus mostly have this dish as one of the attractions.
Any pulpy mango, preferably Totapuri(Ginimoothi) is suited for this. The mango should be just ripe and firm while chopping. Pineapple should be sweet with a slight hint of tang. Other fruits like apple, pears, strawberries and dates are also added by some people. Whatever maybe the combo of fruits, the masala should be made correctly with right amount of chillies and mustard seeds.

Some may add a seasoning of Mustard seeds and red chillies for added flavour but I prefer it without seasoning. Modern day caterers ad ice cream or whole cream also to make this more attractive for kids. This can be best relished chilled and after the feast as dessert. Here's the traditional recipe for making this dish.

Ripe Mango - 500Gms
Pineapple - 500Gms
Grapes(Preferably seedless) - 200Gms
Grated Coconut - 1 and 1/2 cup
Tamarind - A pinch
Red Chillies - 2-3 roasted with little oil
Mustard seeds - 1 Tsp
Salt - To taste

Chop the fruits into bite size pieces.
If the grapes are small, leave them intact. Otherwise halve them lengthwise.
Grind grated coconut, roasted chillies and tamarind to a coarse chutney.
Just before removing the chutney from the mixer, add mustard seeds and grind further for 30 secs.
Add the ground chutney to the fruit chinks, add salt to taste and mix well.
Chill and serve with rice, rasam and other veg accompaniments.

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