February 20, 2010

Amm ke Achaar (Pickled Mango)

Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem

If you look over yonder to the right side of this blog, you'll see a list of other food sites I particularly enjoy. I don't go posting every food-related-anything on that list, but only those sites that really hit that spot (eh, taste bud?) for me. Sites that I've personally tried and loved, which is why I added Mona's site. Sharing the same background as the writer, I'm constantly swimming in a sea of warm, fragrant memories every time I browse her recipes, and this one was no different. The Indian version of pickled fruits or vegetables is nothing like the American or European version. The former is loaded with smoky spices, aromatic herbs and layered with burn-your-tongue chilies. Eaten alongside with every meal, even breakfast, achaar is a staple at South Indian tables. This was my first attempt at making homemade achaar and though its only been a couple days since I made it (the longer it sits, the better it tastes!), if the first-day flavor is any indicator then this is going to be one spicy and delicious achaar insha'allah!

Mango Pickle
(I made 1/3 of this recipe but would highly reccomend making the whole batch if you're an achaar lover)

Unripe and Sour Green Pickle Mangoes – 3, large
Dry Roasted Black Cumin Seed Powder – 1 1/2 tbsp
Red Chilli Powder – 1 tbsp
Salt – 1 1/2 tbsp
Mustard Seeds – 2 tsp
Dry Red Chillies – 4
Turmeric – 1/3 tsp
Curry leaves (fresh) – 6
Green Chillies - as per your taste, chopped or slit (optional)
Canola oil – 3 tbsp

1. With a damp towel, wipe the raw green mangoes clean and dry them with a paper towel throughly. Throughly dry your hands and knife. Carefully, peel the skin, deseed them and cut into very small pieces.

2. In a flat glass container with a tight lid, put the cut raw mango pieces and add salt and turmeric and mix well. Cover the lid tightly and put the container aside for 24 hours in a cool dark place.

3. The next day, you will see that the mango pieces have released a lot of juice. In a pan on medium high heat, pour oil and add the mustard seeds, curry leaves and dry red chillies. As soon as they begin to pop, remove from heat. Let it cool completely. This is the tempering/baghaar.

4. After the baghaar has cooled off completely, pour it into the container with mango pieces, and also add red chilli powder, black cumin seeds powder and green chillies, if using, and mix well. Adjust the salt and red chilli powder according to your tastes. The Achaar is ready. You can now relish upon it. Store it in a glass jar with an air tight lid. It keeps very weel if kept away from water. Always use a dry spoon when you have it and keep it covered and refrigerated.


  1. Achaarrrr!! My mom also makes gajar (carrots) ka achaar! You should totally try that out! =)

  2. Thanks so much for this recipe. My husband has been telling me for a while to make this for him ... maybe I'll give it a go now.


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