Gajjar nu achaar

Gajjar nu achaar

Simple carrot pickle

Mr Todiwala's Bombay
1 kg
Helen Cathcart

In the subcontinent a pickle is normally cured in the sun and then stored for eating the following year when the fresh fruit or vegetable comes back into season and a fresh batch is made for the following year. In countries where sunlight is at a premium, we have to use other methods. The tempering/sizzling of spices and, sometimes, cooking the vegetables will ensure that spoilage is minimised and will aid its keeping qualities. This pickle will get better with age and you may prefer to leave one of the jars for a few months to enjoy it at its best.


Quantity Ingredient
1kg carrots
1 1/2-2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons black mustard seeds
1 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
5 cm piece cinnamon stick
5-6 cloves
200ml sunflower, rapeseed or olive oil
1 tablespoon ground turmeric
2 tablespoons chilli powder
2-3 tablespoons caster sugar


  1. Peel and cut the carrots into 5 mm batons, 4–5 cm long. Place in a bowl. Sprinkle with the salt, toss well and set them aside for a few hours.
  2. Meanwhile, gently toast the mustard seeds, the fenugreek, cumin, cinnamon and cloves in a dry frying pan for about 30 seconds, stirring, until fragrant. Set aside to cool briefly.
  3. Grind to a powder in a clean coffee grinder or a mortar with a pestle (alternatively use a small bowl with the end of a rolling pin).
  4. Squeeze out all the water from the carrots and place them in a clean (preferably stainless steel) bowl.
  5. Heat the oil in a saucepan until it begins to smoke. Remove from the heat then add all the spices. Keep stirring to prevent them from burning and also to cool the oil rapidly.
  6. Mix the sugar into the carrots and then pour in the oil with the spices. Mix well.
  7. When cold, put in sterilised airtight jars and leave in a cool, dark place for at least a week to allow to mature before eating. The oil will gradually come to the surface and the pickle will soon take on its character.
  8. To ensure the pickle keeps well, when serving always use a dry spoon and, also, as soon as you have taken what you want, wipe the edges with a piece of dry paper towel and then seal again.
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