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Every thing about AMBAKALYA | Vahrehvah :


 Ambakalya is a tasty and popular Parsi dish made of small mangoes pickled or cooked in jaggery, flavored with cinnamon sticks which can also be served as chutney by mashing and taking out the pulp. This dish is sweet, tangy and a tantalizing recipe. Ambakalya is an ideal dish cooked during Gahambar, a Zoroastrian festival which is celebrated six times in a year to honor the different seasons.

Gahambar resembles the six elements of creation of the earth, namely, sky, water, earth, plants, cattle and man. The Parsis commemorate the occasion as a reinforcement of the feelings of brotherhood, reminding the Parsi’s about the good deeds that each Parsi must perform during his lifetime. To add on, people engage in religious ceremonies, prayers and offerings, and preparing traditional food.

Ambakalya or Ambakalia is a tangy dish prepared from raw or green mangoes. Flavorful and spicy, this marinade is a perfect add on to your festive food. Ambakalya is luscious, mouth watering and to keep the fragrance and flavor intact, cinnamon spice is generally grounded just before preparing dishes and added at the last moment in the cooking recipes as prolonged cooking results in evaporation of essential oils.

Cinnamon sticks are widely used around the world as a spice. It is added in cookery as a condiment and flavoring base. Cinnamon powder is used in the preparation of chocolate, desserts (cinnamon buns), pastries, apple pie, bagels, sweet rolls, spiced tea, hot cocoa and liqueurs. In India, cinnamon sticks are used in preparing of some popular Indian vegetarian and chicken curries and rice dishes like biryani or pulaos that contain either whole cinnamon sticks or small amounts of ground powder.

In Middle Eastern countries, it is used in meat and rice dishes. It has also been used in the preparation of soups, barbecue sauces, pickling and as one of the ingredients in variety of curry powders. Cinnamon is a spice derived from the bark of an evergreen tree. Cinnamon is native to India and as such, its uses range from that of a flavoring agent to a medicinal agent.

Cinnamon oil can also be prepared from this bark. While using it to cook Pulao, one should sauté the Cinnamon stick in a little bit of oil until one can feel the aroma wafting high. Cinnamon is also used in traditional medicine to treat toothaches as well as bad breath.

For preparing this tangy and sweet Ambakalya, firstly peel the mangoes and cut into pieces Cut jaggery into small pieces and cook mango slices till they turn soft. Mix jaggery and water. Boil it till jaggery gets melted.

Add mango slices and cinnamon sticks and cook it covered over medium flame for about 10 minutes. Now cook it uncovered till it turns to thick syrup. Keep it aside for cooling.

The Ambakalya dish is ready to serve. Do try this delightfully, exotic, tangy, sweet flavored dish.

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Cinnamon with its sweet flavor, warmth is one of the highly prized spices. It has been in use since biblical times for its medicinal and culinary properties. The spice contains many health benefiting essential oils such as eugenol, a phenylpropanoids class of chemical compound, which gives pleasant, sweet aromatic fragrances. Eugenol has got local anesthetic and antiseptic properties, hence; useful in dental and gum treatment procedures. It also contains very good amounts of vitamin A, niacin, pantothenic acid, and pyridoxine.

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