Thursday, November 8, 2012

Sri Lankan Achcharu (Spicy Pickled Vegetables)

I seem to be finding myself in a pickle lately.... well not really.  I just love eating them.  I recently made bread and butter pickles so I knew I had to showcase a very traditional Sri Lankan pickle to the blog as well.  This pickle is wonderful with rice and curry.  Just a few pieces of any of these vegetables brings a bright flavor to your meal.  My mother and I made this pickle together and we kind of made a big batch.  I wrote down the quantities for two large bottles (32oz) worth of pickles.  So if you want to just give it a try quarter the recipe.  Of course the pickle keeps in your fridge for a few months so you can always us the entire recipe and enjoy it with every meal or share it with a friend.

Pickling liquid:
4 cups vinegar
1 cup white sugar
2-3 Tbs grated fresh ginger **(I added 3)
2-3 Tbs grated fresh garlic **(I added 3)
1-2 Tbs red chili powder **(I added 2)
1-2 Tbs salt **(I added 2)
1 Tbs turmeric powder
1/3 cup black mustard seeds (ground in food processor with some of the vinegar)

1lb Green chilies whole with a slit down the middle (seeded if you desire less spice)
5-6 large carrots sliced
2-3 red onions sliced into large wedges
10-12 shallots whole or cut into half depending of size

Optional vegetables:  Cauliflower cut into florets, green beans, green papaya (papaw)

Note:  I made this pickle with my favorite ingredients only, but the optional ingredients work just as well.

Grind black mustard seeds with some of the vinegar and place in pot with all the other pickling liquid ingredients.

Bring to a boil for 5 minutes.   Taste the pickling liquid because the flavor will need to be your taste since it will flavor all the vegetables. Pour over prepared vegetables and allow to sit until liquid cools.


 Once at room temperature put pickled vegetables and enough pickling juice to cover the vegetables into clean dry bottles and place in fridge overnight before use. Keeps for a few months in fridge.  Eat with rice and curry meals.  Enjoy.

This will make two 32 ounce bottles of achcharu.  If you desire less, divide in half or quarter recipe. 

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  1. Wow, these pickles look delicious! Over here, we pickle vegetables in vinegar and sugar, and its called "achara." I'd love to try achcharu!

  2. This is a really nice twist of flavor on traditional pickling spices. Love it! I pickled jalapenos and vegetables from my summer garden for teh first time this past summer. It was awesome.

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. These look delicious! And spicy!

  4. If mum made veggies like this I would eat them more often ;)

    Choc Chip Uru

  5. I am going to have to try this recipe. I love all things pickled, and I love spice. Beautiful pictures by the way.

  6. Literally and figuratively a great way to spice up meals.

  7. Great looking pickled vegetables for just snacking or adding to rice dishes. Looks quite easy to do.

  8. Hi Ramona,

    I am so glad that finally I found a Sri Lankan cooking blog :). I have been blogging for sometime now but did not find one. I am a Sri Lankan too.You have a lovely blog. Wish you all the best!

  9. looks delicious. im gonna try this

  10. I ate it in Kandy tastes awesomeπŸ˜‹πŸ˜‹πŸ˜‹πŸ˜‹


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