Salted mango chutney(Noncha ambli sasam)

Nonche(Konkani) is pickle. Ambli(Konkani) is unripe mango. This is a special chutney prepared using the salted unripe mangoes. During mango season, unripe mangoes which do not have very hard seed are put in big Bharnis(Ceramic jars – used to store pickles) and lot of salt is put on top of them. On top of this, two big stones are kept for weight. Then the top of this jars-usually called as mouth of the jars, are tied along with the lid with a cloth to seal the lid. These jars are left in the dark corners of the house for months. These jars are opened and the mangoes are taken out during non-mango-seasons. These are usually called as “MeeTa(Salt) ambli or Udka(water) ambli or Noncha ambli“. The salted mangoes are eaten as it is or used in many dishes. Usually these are served along with water to the servants. These mangoes and a glass of water leaves a long lasting flavor in the mouth :).

Among all dishes prepared with these salted mangoes, my favorite is this sasam/chutney. This is usually served the rice congee(‘Pej’ – Konkani) in between breakfast and lunch at around 11AM. I keep making Congee here, but never made sasam. My supply of these salted mangoes comes from my mother. I used to get few salted mangoes from native and store them in refrigerator. Now I can’t tell how much I am missing this dish. This sasam has a salty-spicy-sour taste. I have not seen such small unripe mangoes here in US.

Last week when my parents went to Bangalore to visit my brother and SIL, I asked them to prepare this and take pictures. They all made sure to do this and take pictures during their busy schedule in Bangalore. I am posting this recipe here for future reference.

3 salted mangoes
1 cup grated coconut(fresh/frozen)
3-4 green chilies
A pinch of asafoetida


Soak the mangoes in water for sometime to remove the excess salt. Discard the water. Grind coconut with green chilies and asafoetida to a smooth paste without adding much water. Now add mangoes and grind (the mangoes need not become a smooth paste. Some small pieces of mangoes make this dish more tasty). Mangoes already have salt, so no need to add salt again.
Serve with Congee(Pej) or rice.

Serves : 3-4
Preparation time : 5mins

24 thoughts on “Salted mango chutney(Noncha ambli sasam)”

  1. wow shilpa-
    that was nice of your family to take these photos. i am very grateful to learn of this pickle and chutney prepared with them. i wish these small mangoes were available here as well, because i enjoy making these fermented pickles and would do so. i may try this anyway with green mangoes from here in US- they are not worth eating ripe 🙂
    i am wondering, are other unripe fruits, such as papaya, made into pickles in the dark corners of the rooms in the houses in your native city? just wondering… i know nothing is the same as mangoes… i love them in all ways!

  2. Happy New Year Shilpa!:)) I love the photo of your Kodkani ! There is my dream, but somewhere like that in US!:D

    India always looks gorgeous,I don’t think we can get that kind photo in here anyway! Hope one day,you will have your dream come true just like that but very very soon!:)Wish you the best!

    Chutney is mouthwatering btw! Literally,thinking of salted mangoes!:D:D

  3. Thanks for posting such a authentic Konkani side dish. I donoo whether i will be able to make it here i US. I have to be happy seeing these pictures and wait to eat when i am back in India.

  4. hi shilpa, he polon ekdum gaunche udgas aile….ammi gavan kumta gel tenna mhaven he karche asshile…..ur recipes bring back long lost menmories :-)…..hanga ukda tandlaka kasan mhantachi?? i saw ur post yest and i must say that im feeling very proud of u…i wish u all the best in ur carreer and i sincerely wish that u should be able to manage ur passion about the webite along with ur fulltime job as i really do not want to stop the connection that i have with u and the website.I have not written much to u but ever since i have come to know of this site i have been religiously following it and have tried many recipes from ur blog one of wich is the eggless banana cake which i made on my Moms birthday.Wish u goodluck and please do keep posting and enlighting all of ur fans as we want to see more and more of Shilpa’s aayis recipes day after day….everyday. Thanks Nandini.

  5. hi shilpa,after seeing the pic my mouth started watering…remembered my moms
    ambli sasam….and thanks for the kodkani pic saw it after a long time..u know Kodkani is my native also.

  6. Shilpa thats a new learning for me. We do the salted mangoes and eat them as a pickle. Now on I will try this recipe. Thumbs up to you for sure know it will taste good.

  7. Thanks Shilpa for another tasty trip down the culinary trail …HOW did you manage to bring the ‘salted mangoes’ over tothe US? BTW – here i have used the whole mangoes from ‘MTR VAdu Mango Pickle’ (our appe midi) wash v well and soak in a little hot water before blending – it is quite close to the ‘salted mangoes’ of our region … doyou recall bamboo shoots too that are stored that way? another treat… another entry:)

  8. Shilpa….I could picture exactly what the process was by reading your procedure of how these mangoes were stored. You surely make everbody’s mouth water. Even the time of eating Paz is accurate!!!
    Fortunately for me, I have access here in Bangalore and will take some with me to Canada:)

    Don’t you dare ask me to mail it from Canada! Just kidding…

  9. WOW! quite nostalgic here looking at this chutney. No salted mangoes here in Muscat. Great results Shilpa!

    Btw, we hope that you will participate at feed a hungry child campaign’s group book project with some of your precious heirloom recipes. Cheers!

  10. Shilpa,

    A happy new year to u and good luck in all ur endeavors. This is a great recipe. My mom used the red chillies instead of the green ones… I love this sasam.. thanks for the post.


  11. Wonderful recipe Shilpa and again so new to me. Great to learn about regional cooking and varying tastes and customs. I love it…My nani (mothers mother) used to make these dry unripe mangoes too. The mangoes were cut into chunks and then marinated in a water solution with salt and turmeric. Then after several days soaking, they were left to dry in the open air. I know this marinated mangoes were used to make a sweet and sour pickle called Gur keri, really divine taste. I remember stealing these drying mango chunks when nani was not looking and chewing them, they were great. Thanks for bringing back memories…

  12. gowri-
    i love olives too…that’s a good idea….much better than my idea of rinsing off the chili and spice paste from the oil-achaar of mangoes 🙂

  13. Thanks to you all for the lovely words.

    Pelicano, as far as I know, we put bamboo shoots, lemons, raw jackfruit, mangoes and few other things in salt to preserve them for long. Never heard of papaya being preserved in that way.

    Asha, yes, Kodkani river looks really beautiful during sunset. There is a small island across the river which is full of coconut trees. It is lovely.

    Chitramami, didn’t bring them here. My brother took the picture in Bangalore :).

    VKN, I will send my entry soon. Searching for a suitable recipe.

    Nandini, in Indian stores, a kind of reddish rice (from Kerala) is available. That tastes exactly like our ukdo tandul. Its called Rosametta or Palakadan matta rice.

  14. Hi Shilpa,

    Happy 2007. In my grand parents place I had tasted something called aambe sasam which was being made with ripe mangoes (infact there are 2 different varieties, one boiled masolu and one raw masolu). It’s made with red chillies instead of green chillies. Sasam means Rai (mustard seeds) and the name for the dish comes because of the use Mustard seeds in the masolu. Grind grated coconut, red chillies, Tamarind and mustard seeds (very little for flavor). To the grind paste add jaggery depending on the taste and ripeness of mango. Remove the skin of mango and drop in this masolu. Tastes heavenly.

    In my GP’s place they get small variery of mango, which I find here in California once in a while. Alphonso is not a good choice for this dish. Also if you want to boil the gravy, use very little grated coconut and make a very fine paste. The boiled variety is much thinner in consistency and you can squeeze couple of over ripe mangoes to get base consistency instead of coconut paste.

    Hope you publish and all can enjoy.
    Take care


  15. Shankar you are talking about ambe sasam (click the link to see details). It is also made with pineapple. Its a must in mango season. But this nonche ambli sasam is prepared in other seasons.

  16. Mangoes are all time favourites and knowing a new recipe with them , makes me have a bite of it right now 🙂 Its seems to be a wonderful recipe
    – Sushma

  17. Dear Shilpa,
    Thanks for reminding me this recipe.
    I have a lot of “mango pickle” (normal ambli nonche…along with the khal and big mango pieces) stored in the fridge which I want to finish it off by using regularly.
    In my house, I am not making “peji”. So the pickle is not used by anyone even with the normal rice. I don’t want to waste those pickle which are really in a lot of quantity (big size bharni full).
    Could you please tell me: In which recipes can I make use of this mango pickle? I mean, Is there a recipe where I can use a table spoon of pickle while preparing any dish?
    I am surely going to use this pickle while making this chutney (above recipe).
    But also want to know if there are other recipes where I can substitute with a table spoonful of my mango pickle. I want to use it in my regular cooking, then only I can finish off the stock of my mango pickle. Please help!

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