Nellikaai oorgai/ Amla pickle

So we ordered another batch of Nellikaai/ Amlas and what we got wasn’t a great batch. My mil had decided to convert it into a pickle so the people in our house won’t notice the form/ shape/ texture and she had already steamed the amlas when I walked into the kitchen. When I heard of this plan, I totally wanted to blog it. But my mil was so bothered about how they appeared (brown spots in a lot of places & bruises here and there) and kept telling me not to blog it (I found this mega cute). She was like ‘photos nanna irukkadhu ma’. Well I had a totally different take on this.

a) It gives people like me an idea of what to do when your amlas are not in a great form or shape.

b) Only the initial amlas pictures will show the bruises/ brown tinge. Once the pickle is done, it really doesn’t matter how they looked in the beginning (literally the whole reason why mil wanted to pickle it in the first place). Now take a look at the below pic for proof :). I am quite sure you can’t make out if these were made out of mega firm, amazing looking gooseberries or not :D.

And oh, not only when life gives you lemon.. when life (well grocer) gives you gooseberries, by all means go ahead and pickle them :D.

Nellikaai oorgai/ Amla pickle
Prep Time
10 mins
Cook Time
25 mins
Resting Time
3 hrs
Course: Side Dish, Sides
Cuisine: Indian
Servings: 2 cups
  • 500 g Nellikaai/ amla/ gooseberries 40 small ones
  • 3 tbsp refined oil
  • 1.5 tsp mustard seeds
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric powder
  • 4 tbsp red chilli powder
  • 4 tbsp rock salt
  • 1/2 tbsp asafoetida
  • 1 tbsp fenugreek seeds
  • 1 tbsp mustard powder optional
  • 2 tbsp mustard oil optional
  1. Steam nellikaai/ amlas/ gooseberries for 10 minutes.

  2. Once it cools down, deseed the gooseberries, spread the gooseberries on a plate & let it air dry for 2-3 hours.

  3. Meanwhile, dry roast fenugreek seeds & coarsely pound them using a mortal pestle. Set it aside.

  4. In a heavy bottom vessel/ kadai, heat 2T refined oil.

  5. Once hot, add 1.5t mustard seeds, let it splutter and then add turmeric powder.

  6. Throw in the gooseberries and let it cook for 5 minutes on low flame (in the biggest burner).

  7. Add 4T rock salt & saute for 2 minutes.

  8. Then add 1T refined oil to the center of the kadai, add red chilli powder, asafoetida, mustard powder & powdered fenugreek.

  9. Saute for 2-3 minutes, finally add 2T mustard oil and turn off the heat.

  10. Naaku ooring nellikaai oorga is ready.

  11. After it cools down completely, store in an airtight container.

  12. In room temperature, this keeps well for 4-5 days. It keeps well for 1 month in refrigerator.

Recipe Notes
  1. You can use only refined oil instead of mustard oil.
  2. You can skip mustard powder. We love the flavour of mustard in pickles & hence use it. 
  3. Typically let the flavours soak/ settle in for 24 hours before consuming it. 

Stepwise pictures

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