I am in love with the cuisine of the Udupi and Mangalore regions of India. I adore the simple preparations from these places, which burst with flavour. Local, fresh ingredients and freshly ground spices are key in the cooking here. This Ananas Menaskai is one such simple, but extremely flavourful, dish from Udupi-Mangalore that all of us at home are extremely fond of.
The Ananas Menaskai is similar to the Pineapple Gotsu that I often made, but made with fewer ingredients. It is a beautiful medley of sweet, sour, spicy and salty flavours, pairing up wonderfully well with rotis, dosas, parathas and rice alike. I think it would be a great inclusion to a full-fledged plantain-leaf meal, as well.
Here is how I make the Ananas Menaskai.
Recipe Source: Food For Joy, with a few minor variations
Ingredients (serves 3-4):
- 2 cups pineapple cubes, thorns and core removed
- Salt, to taste
- A small lemon-sized ball of tamarind
- 2 tablespoons jaggery
To be ground into a paste:
- 1 teaspoon oil
- 5-6 dry red chillies
- 1 tablespoon white sesame seeds
- 1/2 cup freshly grated coconut
For the tempering:
- 1 teaspoon oil
- 2 pinches of asafoetida
- 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 2-3 dry red chillies
- 1 sprig fresh curry leaves
- Soak the tamarind in a little boiling water for about 10 minutes. Extract a thick paste out of it, adding a little more water if necessary. Keep aside.
- Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a pan. Add in all the ingredients for the spice paste – the sesame seeds, dry red chillies, and grated coconut. Fry on medium flame till the ingredients begin to emit a lovely fragrance. Ensure that the ingredients do not burn. Transfer to a plate and allow the ingredients to cool down entirely. Grind the roasted ingredients to a paste, in a mixer, using a little water.
- Meanwhile, heat 2 cups of water in a pan, and add in the pineapple cubes. Cook on medium flame till the water comes to a boil.
- Add the ground paste to the pineapple cubes in the pan, after the water has come to a boil.
- Add tamarind paste, salt to taste and jaggery. Mix well. Let cook for 3-4 minutes more.
- Meanwhile, prepare the tempering. Heat the oil for tempering in a pan. Turn the flame to medium, add mustard seeds, and allow them to splutter. Add the asafoetida, dry red chillies and curry leaves. Let them stay in for a couple of seconds. Switch off gas, and add the tempering to the pan with the pineapple cubes.
- When the ananas menaskai has cooked for 3-4 minutes, switch off gas. Let it cool down completely before serving. Transfer any leftovers to a clean, dry, air-tight container and keep refrigerated. Refrigerated in a dry, air-tight container, the ananas menaskai keeps for 2-3 days.
- Make sure all the cores and thorns have been removed from the pineapple. Cut them into small or large-ish chunks, the way you would like.
- Adjust the quantity of tamarind, salt, jaggery and dry red chillies you use, depending upon your personal taste preferences.
- Add in a little water, if you think the pineapple menaskai is getting too thick.
- For best results, use pineapple that is ripe, but firm and not overly mushy, for best results.
Do you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!
This recipe is for the Foodie Monday Blog Hop. The theme for this week is ‘Say It With Pineapple’.