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amla pickle

Nellikai Pickle / Gooseberry Pickle recipe

These Indian style gooseberry pickles will definitely pep up your meal
Course Pickle
Cuisine Andhra, Indian
Keyword Oorgai
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 300 g
Author Hema Magesh


  • 250 g Gooseberry (Big Indian Gooseberry)
  • 2+2 tbsp sesame oil/til oil/nallennai (or as needed)
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 4 dry red chillies
  • a gooseberry sized ball of tamarind
  • 1 tbsp rock salt
  • 1 tsp jaggery
  • ¼ tsp hing/perungayam/asafoetida powder
  • water as needed
  • juice of 1 lemon

To dry roast and powder

  • 1 tsp mustard seeds
  • ½ tsp methi/fenugreek seeds


  • Wash the gooseberry and wipe it with a cloth or tissue paper. Soak the tamarind in half a cup of water.
    Nellikai pickle prep step 1
  • Dry roast the mustard and methi seeds for a few minutes in low flame, till the mustard turns whitish and the methi starts browning.
    Nellikai pickle prep step 2
  • Cool this down and powder it in a motor and pestle. Add the garlic pods to this powder and roughly crush them.
  • Grind the tamarind, the whole red chillies and the salt in a mixer to a smooth paste using the water in which the tamarind was soaked.
    Nellikai pickle prep step 3
  • In an earthenware pan, heat up 2 tbsp of sesame oil. Shallow fry the gooseberry in batches for a few minutes till it mildly browns up on the surface. Keep aside.
  • In the same oil add crushed mustard-methi-garlic mix and give it a good stir.
  • Add the ground paste, and the hing, turmeric powder, and jaggery.
    Nellikai pickle prep step 5
  • When it comes to a boil add the fried gooseberries and curry leaves.
  • Taste test, balance the spices, and let it cook till oil separates. Add the lemon juice just before turning off the stove.
    Nellikai pickle prep step 6
  • Cooldown and transfer to a glass or ceramic container preferably. Let it mature for at least a week before consuming, but I bet it's not going to last that long.