Pickles Recipe

Pickles: An additional taste to food

Although pickles are a common cross culture trend in food consumption and flavouring, the history of pickles dates back to India when cucumbers were sliced and stored in a brine solution with spice and fermented to be eaten with food as an additional flavouring to enhance taste. When the indentured labourers came to Durban they carried over that practised of making pickles to be consumed with their meals. Pickles are convenient to make and they are affordable. They serve as a spicy side dish and is a great form of seasoning or adding taste to food during meal times. Indians in Durban make their own pickles at home or they can be bought in bottles at local stores. Pickles are also commonly found served at Indian prayers and weddings. The most common types of pickles are mango, mixed vegetable, carrot, lime, mint and green chillies. The most common term in Durban for pickles is atchar.

Basic sweet and sour Mango Pickle Recipe


  • 10 green mangoes, sliced into quarters
  • 7-8 finely chopped green chillies
  • 100g of pickle masala
  • ½ teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 3 tablespoons of chilli powder
  • 2 tablespoons of sugar
  • A pinch of rough salt to taste
  • 1 teaspoon cumin and coriander powder
  • 5 large cloves of garlic sliced
  • 1 ½ teaspoons of crushed ginger and garlic paste
  • ½ a bottle of vinegar


Combine the mangoes and rough salt together and allow the salt to dissolve completely. Place the mangoes on absorbent paper and allow the mangoes to dry in the sun for 2 days. This allows for any excess moisture to drain out.The mangoes should appear dry and would have shrug a little. Add pickle masala, turmeric powder, chilli powder, sugar, cumin and coriander powder to the mangoes and mix well. Stir in the vinegar, garlic slices, ginger and garlic paste. Stir in the green chillies and mix well again.

Mixed vegetables pickle


  • 5 carrots peeled and cut into fine sticks
  • 5 green chillies finely diced
  • A ¼ of a cauliflower, trimmed into florets
  • ¼ of a finely chopped cabbage
  • Salt to taste
  • ½ a bottle of vinegar
  • 100g of pickle masala
  • 5 tablespoons of chilli powder
  • ½ a teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 1 teaspoon of mixed cumin and coriander powder and 6 cloves of garlic peeled and sliced


In a large bowl combine together the carrots, green beans, chillies, cabbage and cauliflower. Add in the vinegar and mix well. Allow the vegetables to absorb the vinegar for an hour. Stir in the salt, pickle masala, chilli powder, turmeric powder, cumin and coriander powders. Mix the pickle well to ensure an even distribution of the spices, till the vegetables are soaked with the spices. Add in the the sliced garlic Allow the pickle to stand for a few hours. Mix the pickle and place into jars or bottles. Pickles can be stored for up to 3 months in a refrigerated environment.

Yoveshine Pillay

Ref: Indian Delights 2005. Page 14

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