red/green chilli pickle

Everything in life, including a vacation, comes to an end. But let’s not get morbid here. When a break ends, a semester begins. And it is nice to get back to the humdrum of life. Ordinary days, like deli coffee, make me happy.

I spent the weekend doing exactly what I had planned. There was a Lohri celebration on our street…full of popcorn, peanuts, rewri and a bonfire. Next day was Makar Sankranti, so mom made some moong dal and choorma.

And we made red chilli pickle. You can also use green chillies instead.  Big, fat, juicy chillies are stuffed with a mixture of powdered fennel seeds (saunf), fenugreek seeds (methi), brown mustard seeds (rai), turmeric, salt and mustard oil. Proportions for fennel, mustard and fenugreek are approximately 1 : 1 : 1/2. Fenugreek tends to be a little bitter, so use it with caution and restraint. Adjust the quantities depending on the number and size of your chillies.


  • Large red or green chillies
  • Fennel seeds, saunf
  • Brown mustard seeds, rai
  • Fenugreek seeds, methi dana
  • Turmeric powder
  • Salt
  • Mustard oil


  • Wash the chillies and dry them completely.
  • One by one, lightly toast and then grind the fennel, mustard and fenugreek seeds.
  • Combine the powdered spices with salt, turmeric and a little mustard oil to form a pasty mixture.

  • Slit the chillies lengthwise and stuff them well with the spice mix.
  • Put them in a clean and dry jar and marinate for a few days.

  • Once the chillies become soft, pour in some mustard oil. Use enough oil to coat each chilli, but don’t drown them in it. Otherwise the stuffing will ooze out.
  • That’s about it! The pickle is ready to eat and will last a few months.



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