A no oil, 3-ingredient and simplest yet yummy pickle – this Turmeric Pickle or Haldi Ka Achar is a Gujarati special and made with kachcha haldi or fresh turmeric root, lemon juice and salt. While this Turmeric Pickle recipe is tangy, there’s another sweet Gujarati preserve called the Aam Chunda made with green unripe mangoes that you must try before the mango season is over.
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My tryst with Turmeric Pickle
I’ve always considered turmeric as an important spice in my recipe and food in general, because of the unique natural color it can impart to any dish and its many nutritional benefits.
While enjoying a regular lunch at one of our Gujarati friend’s place, she had served us two pickles. One was with fresh turmeric roots and the other with mango ginger (aam haldi or amba haldi) roots.
The pickles were really simple without any oil or spices. But the flavors hit a jackpot for my taste buds! I loved them so much that I decided to try the recipe at home, especially the Haldi Ka Achar.
I have a good collection of cookbooks and read about a pickle recipe which had ginger, turmeric and mango ginger in ‘Gujarati Kitchen: Family Recipes for the Global Palate,’ a cookbook by Bhanu Hajratwala. So, I loosely adapted this Turmeric Pickle recipe from there.
About Haldi Ka Achar
No pickle can get as simple as this Turmeric Pickle as this does not involve any cooking and gets done by just mixing the ingredients. The only time that is required is to prep the fresh and raw turmeric roots by peeling and chopping/slicing them.
Then, just dunk this along with the squeezed-out lemon juice and salt in a large bowl or directly in a glass jar. Cove the jar and refrigerate the Haldi Ka Achar for 6 days. Post this, the pickle is ready to serve and can be refrigerated for about 2 months.
During these 6 days, you must shake the jar once every day and place it back in the refrigerator. The lemon juice has to cover the turmeric completely in order to avoid the pickle from getting spoilt.
As for alternatives, this Turmeric Pickle recipe can also be made with mango ginger instead of turmeric roots. If you like a little spice factor in your pickles, feel free to add some green chilies too.
However, you must be careful of staining that the turmeric will cause, on your hands too. So, don’t opt for anything white (board or napkin). Avoid wearing white clothes as well.
The Turmeric Pickle is great when served before meals to help digestion as well as with the meals for a delicious punch.
Apart from this beautiful Turmeric Pickle, try including this Turmeric Milk or Haldi Doodh too in your diet. It is a natural immunity-boosting beverage, with an easy-peasy recipe.
Health Benefits of Turmeric
Turmeric in any form is truly a gem for the human system because of its various health benefits. Ayurveda, traditional Chinese and Siddha traditions also approve of it because of its many medicinal properties and uses.
Read on to know why your food must be good friends with this common spice.
- Turmeric is anti-inflammatory and has antioxidants. Thus, helps in reducing inflammation of tonsils, throat, knees, etc. and gives relief from many aches. A gargling water made with turmeric, salt and warm water is effective against sore throats.
- It is antimicrobial and has great effect against certain pathogens.
- A turmeric and salt paste can be used on the human skin to cure swellings, bruises and abrasions.
- According to Ayurveda, turmeric is super good for digestion.
- Ensure that the lemon juice completely covers the turmeric, or else the pickle might spoil.
- You can use mango ginger or edible wild turmeric too as an alternative to fresh ginger in this recipe.
- To add some fieriness in the pickle, you can add green chilies.
- The jar or bottle that you use for storing the pickle must be clean and sterilized well. Store the pickle in a glass or ceramic jar. Do not use plastic jar.
- The pickle takes about a week to mature. Keep the pickle in the refrigerator as it matures. When the pickle is ready, continue to refrigerate and store it for about 2 months. It stays good for that much time.
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Turmeric Pickle (Haldi Ka Achar)
- 250 grams turmeric roots – fresh and raw
- 1 teaspoon salt or add as required
- 3 large lemons – yields a bit more than ½ cup lemon juice or add more if required
- Firstly, rinse the turmeric roots in water thoroughly.
- Peel and chop them into small pieces. This is very important. Do not chop them into large chunks.
- Extract the juice from the lemons and set aside.
- In a non reactive bowl, add the chopped turmeric pieces, salt and lemon juice. Stir to combine evenly.
- Spoon everything in a clean sterilized jar.
- Close the jar with its lid and keep it in the refrigerator for 6 days.
- Shake the jar everyday. After 6 days, the pickle will be ready to serve.
- Serve a very small portion, about ½ to 1 teaspoon of the Turmeric Pickle with any Indian meal.
- This Haldi Ka Achar stays good for about 2 months in the refrigerator.
- Add more lemon juice if needed. The pickle should always be covered by a layer of lemon juice.
- Remember to store the turmeric pickle in the refrigerator. Do not keep at room temperature as it can get spoiled.
- To make a slightly more large batch scale up the recipe.
This Turmeric Pickle post from the archives first published on May 2014 has been republished and updated on 20 May 2022.