Saturday, 16 April 2016

Naranga Achar | Lemon pickle

I cook the planned food, take photos and keep it aside. I work on the photos and the post later whenever I get time. This time I was not satisified with the pics for naranga achar when I copied the pics and saw them in my PC. But I couldn't take another set of pics because by that time naranga achar was over!!! And I couldn't plan or cook another recipe from N because the realization came in very late. So had to settle down for "not-so-good" pictures. Probably I shall change them in due-course when I get good clicks.

I had decided a long time back that I will post Naranga Achar for N in this month long blogging marathon. Naranga is the malayalam word for lemon. There are multiple ways to prepare lemon pickle. The method I give below is the one which my mom follows and I feel this method makes the lemon pickle without any bitterness. Achar is the malayalam word for pickle but sometimes I have heard this being called naranga kari.

Kerala sadhya always has pickles included and most  of the time it is the lemon pickle since lemon is available in almost all the seasons. Home made pickle always taste good than the store-bought ones. So here we go:


Lemon - 20 nos
Dried red chillies - 5 nos
Turmeric powder - 2 tbsp
Salt - to taste (I used 5 tsp salt)
Red chilly powder - 4 tbsp
Fenugreek powder - 1/2 tsp
Asafoetida powder / Hing - 1/2 tsp
Curry leaves - 1 sprig
Gingelly oil / sesame oil - 4 tbsp
Vinegar - 1 tsp
mustard - 1 tsp


  • Clean, wash and pat dry lemon/lime. Steam in steamer or idli vessel for 8-10 minutes. Remove from the fire and take out the lemon from steamer. Let it cool and wipe it well with a kitchen towel
  • Cut the lemon into halfs and then each half into 4 pieces. So totally 8 pieces out of one lemon.
  • Take care not to loose the lemon juice while cutting.
  • In air tight dry glass jar or in a ceramic jar (bharani); add chopped lemon pieces,turmeric powder, salt according to your taste, mix well and keep for 10 to 15 days in room temperature. You can also keep it in sunlight for an hour daily.
  • Shake the jar once everyday or stir the mix once a day using a clean,dry spoon.
  • On the day you are making the pickle - Heat the 2 tbsp of sesame oil/gingely oil in pan. Add the mustard seed, when  it’s starts spluttering, add the curry leaves and dry red chillies;
  • Simmer the flame. Add the red chili powder, asafoetida powder, fenugreek powder and saute for couple of  seconds.
  • Allow the mix to cool down and then add the lemon slices along with the juice; mix well and adjust the salt. Set aside and let it cool.
  • Add vinegar and combine well in a such a way that vinegar has to get into all the parts of the pickle and leave it in the pan for 4-6 hours.
  • Transfer it in an air tight glass jar or in a ceramic jar (bharani) and add 2 tbsp of gingely oil. Keep it in a room temperature for atleast a week for the flavor to set in and then refrigerated it for further use.

Naranga achar is ready!!! This is typically served with biriyanis!!


  • Vinegar can be omitted.
  • You can also add garlic pods to this pickle. I generally don't.
  • You can avoid steaming the lemons also if the lemon skin is very thin.
  • If you want the pickle to be less sour, then remove the juices formed before mixing the chilly powder with the lemon pieces.

Check out the Blogging Marathon page for the other Blogging Marathoners doing BM# 63


  1. Lemon pickle looks mouthwatering...Very well made.

  2. Pickle looks so spicy and love it with curd rice..

  3. What a tangy and yummy looking lemon pickle.

  4. That pickle sounds so delicious..though I am not so much into this lemon version..

  5. I love the spicy, tangy lemon pickle. Your method of preparation and the vinegar addition are new to me.

  6. I thought I commented on this post but don't see the commenting. Lemon pickle looks yummy. We don't steam lemon when pickling. Nice to know it can be this way as well.

  7. Such a yummy and mouth watering pickle..

  8. My togo pickle.. Never added vinegar when I prepare them at home.. But should give it a try

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  10. Such a droolworthy and fingerlicking pickle, too tempting.

  11. Such a tangy and tempting pickle is that.

  12. A new version of lemon pickle for me, yours look delicious.

  13. Addition of vinegar in this pickle is new. Good one.

  14. Such a wonderful pickle you got there! And as Harini said, adding vinegar is new to me too!!

  15. Lovely lemon pickle. I also made it for L, but in a slightly different (more instant) way.

  16. although sandhya made an instant version, like learning about the traditional method as well