Aam Jam; my story of love and mindfulness

“How can I be more mindful ? “, I was chatting with a wise friend.

“Scarcity makes you mindful”, pat came the reply.

These words came true during these lock down days. I suddenly became mindful in terms of food items . The stocks were meticulously checked and any sight of wastage became unbearable. Every grain consumed was duly acknowledged and revered. I became aware of the difficulty in procuring the food stocks.

Lock down also made me self reliant to a great extend.  I learned to do little bit of pickling and preserving during this time. The excess onions I purchased from farmer’s market were sun dried. The small mangoes fell from the tree was salted, sun dried and pickled. I made fryums from sabudana and rice flour too.

Most mornings, I go to the terrace religiously carrying a steel jar filled with hot sabudana batter and sheets. Spreading spoonful of hot batter on the sheet looking up at the morning sun is a holistic experience. When you are in harmony with the work you do, everything gets connected to everything else.

During this mango season we received plentiful supply of Alphonso mangoes. I had already made tens of mango recipes. Some of the mangoes were getting over ripe for use. It was this time that I got inspired to make  mango jam (Amm Jam) from  Chef Kunal Kapoor’s video. I obviously made it with a free hand with my own improvisations and additions to the recipe. It turned out amazing. I took a spoonful of aam jam for tasting. I was hit by the flavor of the nutmeg strands which was used for flavoring and topping. The sweetness of the jam was enhanced by the exotic aroma of the nutmeg  and elaichi . The union was just perfect. And I can’t explain in words how one feels eating a spoonful of hot jam made by oneself without guilt.

This easy recipe of Aam Jam is dedicated to all my dear young moms and the little hungry tummies out there  🙂

Ingredients

2 cups raw mangoes

4 cups sweet mangoes (I used alphonso , so preferably use  similar mangoes without much loose fibers)

2 cups sugar / 200 gms jaggery

Few strands of nutmeg and few crushed elaichis for flavor.

And lots of patience 🙂

Method

Wash and skin the mangoes. Cut them into small cubes. Blend to a smooth paste.

Mix with sugar or powdered jaggery according to your choice.

I used a normal thick bottomed kadai for cooking. Cook the ingredients on a medium to low flame.

Check for sweetness once the added sugar is melted. You can add more sugar or jaggery if needed. 

Keep stirring lightly.

Cooking time is almost 30 minutes. You can either fall in love with the ladle or multi task in and around the kitchen during this time.  

Keep checking the consistency by lifting the ladle at  intervals. The right moment is when the jam stops falling from the ladle. Stir in some crushed nutmeg strands and elaichi.

Take off the flame. Your organic, mindful jam is ready to eat. There are no added preservatives.

Fill it up in  clean, dry glass jars and use  within a month.

Trivia

The scientific name of Nutmeg is Myristica Fragrans. It is a spice with medicinal values .

 

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surekha chandrasekhar

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