Sunday, September 21, 2014

Malay Pickle (Achcharu)

Malay pickle, like the name says, is a delectable side dish which is originally invented by the Malay community of Sri Lanka. However now it has become popular among Sri Lankans at large so much so that no feast or wedding buffet is complete without it. It is basically a combination of selected veggies in pickled sauce. You can't define it's taste exactly as it's a lovely blend of sweet, sour and hot elements. 

Never did I know the way to make until my mother in law shared this wonderful recipe. I have seen my mom making awesome Malay pickle, not to mention the great care she takes to keep all the ingredients free from moisture which is a key point. The reason is, moisture can contribute for quick spoiling of the pickle. Some other things that she has emphasized are using earthen/wooden utensils for the making of pickle and storing them in glass containers. However if you cannot get hold of earthen pot, you can simply use a ceramic or glass bowl. But storing should definitely be in none other than glass jars, because plastic and aluminium containers may react with the acids and may cause damage to the pickle as well as to the human health. 

Here's the recipe:


Peeled Shallots  - 250 g
Onions (cut into big chunks) - 150 g
Capsicum / Bell Pepper (cut into slices/chunks) - 100g
Carrots (Cut into rectangular strips) - 150 g
Green Chillis (Diced) - 3-4 (or to taste)
Pitted Dates - 300 g
Mustard Seed Powder - 50 g
White/Coconut Vinegar - 120 ml
Chilli Flakes to taste
Salt to taste


1. Rinse the veggies and drain the water. Spread them on kitchen towel to remove the extra moisture. Change the kitchen towel after an hour or so. That way you can  ensure that they are dry.

2. In food processor, add the pitted dates, vinegar, mustard powder, chilli flakes and salt. Blend till it turns to thick sauce-like paste.

3. Now in your mixing bowl, add the veggies and pour the prepared pickle sauce. With a wooden spoon mix well until everything is incorporated.

4. Store in a clean and dry glass jar and keep on room temperature for 3 days. You can refrigerate afterwards.

5. Can be served with rice or even with Biryani.


*Make sure everything in this process is free from moisture; including your hands, food processor etc.

*Pickle starts to impart its real flavors after a week or so. You can feel it when you taste. So the rule of thumb is, "the later, the better".


  1. Wonderful recipe to take as a part lunch ,dinner,breakfast yummy

  2. What a delightful recipe. I had this for my wedding buffet too and you are so right, this is a must have for Sri Lankan wedding buffet. This pickle looks super delicious ! Thank you for the recipe.


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