Ripe Mango Side Dish (Ambe Sukke)

Ripe Mango Side Dish (Ambe Sukke)

I hear famous chefs saying 'use what’s in season', 'use seasonal ingredients’ all the time. But, that’s been the tradition since centuries. It’s not just an in-thing. If you take a look at your cuisine, you’ll know that’s true. 

In India summer is when raw jackfruits, raw mangoes, ripe mangoes, ripe jackfruits are in season. And our ancestors used them in abundance while they were in season. These seasonal veggies were used to prepare a variety of dishes & were included in their diet in every way possible.

When I came to think of that, I remembered this delicious, sweet, spicy, side dish that my grandpa absolutely loved. A mango dish called as ambe sukke in Konkani. Ambo in Konkani means mango and sukke refers to a dry side dish in Konkani. 

Ripe mangoes that are in season are added to a coconut gravy that’s spicy, sweet and tangy to make a hearty lunch. Coconut is available in abundance in coastal Karnataka throughout the year. So, simple ingredients that were readily available were put together to make this delicious dish. I simply admire the way our ancestors cooked and our cuisines came into being.

Here’s the recipe for this age old dish, ambe sukke in Konkani.


  • 1-2 ripe mangoes
  • 3/4 cup grated coconut
  • 1 teaspoon of urad dal
  • 1 teaspoon of coriander seeds
  • 1/2 lemon sized tamarind
  • 1 teaspoon of powdered jaggery
  • Salt to taste
  • 3-4 dried red chillies
  • 1 tablespoon of oil

For seasoning:

  • 1 tablespoon of oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon of mustard seeds
  • 1 leaflet of curry leaves

Serves: 2

Preparation Time: 25 minutes

Preparation Method:

Preparing the masala:

Let’s prepare the sweet, spicy, tangy masala first. And to do that:

  1. Heat up a tempering pan, add in 1 tablespoon of oil, add in urad dal, coriander seeds, pieces of dried red chillies & saute them for a minute until urad dal starts to brown. Remove them off heat & let them cool down completely.
  2. Then grind them along with grated coconut, tamarind, jaggery, salt using as much water as required into a smooth to coarse paste. (You an make the masala smooth or coarse. We at home like it to be smooth. My mom likes it a little coarse.)
  3. Keep this ground masala aside.

Put together the dish:

  1. Heat up a wok, add in a tablespoon of oil & mustard seeds. When they start popping, add in curry leaves & let them sizzle for few seconds.
  2. Pour in the ground masala, pieces of ripe mango and mix well.
  3. Traditionally, ripe mango is cut into just 3 pieces without peeling it. One piece contains the mango kernel with the pulp on, the other 2 pieces along with their pulp & peel are added to the dish. But you can choose to remove off the peel or chop mango into pieces & add them to this dish. If you have to serve many then that would be necessary, unless you're using many mangoes.
  4. Add in about 1/2 - 3/4 cup of water and bring it to boil.
  5. Then simmer the dish. Check and adjust salt, jaggery. This dish is supposed to be dry in consistency in the end. And this dish further thickens on cooking, it thickens as water evaporates. Urad dal added to the masala makes this dish thick in consistency. So, it further thickens on cooling. So, you can add about 1 cup of water in total to this dish.
  6. Once, the rawness of the masala goes off & the mango is cooked through & soft, remove it off heat.
  7. Serve it hot as a side dish for lunch, dinner.

Side Note:

If you’re making this dish for many & are in short of ripe mangoes, then you can use field marrow (also known as Mangalore cucumber, Malabar cucumber) along with ripe mangoes to make this dish or chop mangoes into many pieces. This is an age old trick my granny's used to feed our big fat family.

If you're using field marrow, then keep the peel of filed marrow on, deseed it, chop it into cubes. Add cubed field marrow pieces into the wok first after seasoning & cook them using 1 cup of water & salt. Once they are almost cooked, add in ground masala and ripe mango pieces. Cook them through.

Mangoes to be used to make this dish (ambe sukke):

Sour, sweet mangoes are perfect to be used to make this dish. They make this dish delicious by imparting its sourness & sweetness to it. 

Traditionally, local varieties of mangoes called as 'katt ambo/gont ambo' in Konkani, were used to make this dish. Katt ambo/gont ambo is the Konkani word for mangoes that grow on backyard trees. These mangoes are not from the cultivated mango variety & are sweet-sour in taste. They are tiny to medium-small in size. Whole mangoes were usually just slightly slit into 3 pieces & those whole mangoes were added to make this dish. Take a look at 'katt ambo/gont ambo/upakari ambo' - local mangoes placed next to alphonso mangoes below. These mangoes are green on the outside but would be ripe on the inside. 

If you can't find local varieties of sweet-sour mangoes, any variety of ripe, pulpy mangoes are good to go into this dish. Slightly raw mangoes would be slightly sour-sweet & would be perfect to go into this dish.

I'm told by my granny, mangoes that weren't very sweet or sour mangoes or not-so-tasty mangoes that were hard to empty, were used to make this dish. 

Find more Konkani cuisine curry recipes here

Liked this mango dish? You'll also like these famous mango dishes of Konkani cuisine:

Sweet, Sour, Spicy Mango Curry (Ambe Upakari)

Pineapple, Mango In A Spicy, Sweet Coconut Gravy (Avnas Ambe Sasam)

Ripe mangoes in a sweet, spicy side dish (Ambe Gojju)

Ripe Mangoes In Coconut Curry (Ambe Gashi)

Tags: Mango, ambo, sukke, ambe sukke, summer, Konkani cuisine, Konkani recipe, Konkani food, side dish, vegan, vegetarian recipe, GSB Konkani recipe, South Canara Konkani recipe, Konkani cooking, GSB Konkani cuisine.