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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Achari Gobi-Shimla Mirch (Cauliflower & Capsicum in tangy pickling sauce)

   This recipe is originated in the Indian state of Punjab. Achar is Indian Pickle. But no pickle is used here in this recipe. Only the tempering matches in both pickle and in this recipe and the taste is also very similar in both the recipe, therefore the name,"Achari Gobi". The vegetables used here is gobhi or Cauliflower, but brinjal, bhidi/okra, panner/cottage cheese, even chicken is also made in this way.

   The basic spices used here is Panch Phoron(as we call it in bengali) or Five Spice Mix. It's a mixture of five spices(mustard seed, fennel seed, cumin seed, black cumin seed & fenugreek seed) mixed in equal quantity. Tomatoes and dry mango powder gives it a toungue-tickling taste. Instead of using tomatoes, you can also use curd/dahi/yogurt to bring up the tanginess. It's upto you. I love to add tomatoes as it gives a vibrant color to the dish. But paricularly this recipe, I tried with yoghurt/dahi. You can check another recipe, Achari baingan/brinjal, I tried with tomatoes. I added some capsicum/bell pepper with cauliflower,a s I like the combo very much and made Achari Gobi-shimla Mirch(capsicum).
You Need :
Cauliflower : 1, cut into big florets
Capsicum : 1, chop into bigcubes
Onion : 1, thinly sliced
Green chilli : 2, finely chopped 
Ginger-garlic paste : 1 heaped tblsp.
Tomato : 1, small, chopped
Turmeric powder : 2 tsp.
Red Chilli powder : 1-2 tsp.(as per taste)
Amchur/dry mango powder : 1 tsp.
Yoghurt/dahi : 3/4 cup 
Sugar : 1 tsp.
Salt to taste
Oil : 3 tblsp.
Fresh coriander leaves : 1/2 cup, chopped
For Tempering :
Dry red chilli : 1
Nigella/black cumin seeds : 1/4 tsp.
Cumin seeds : 1/4 tsp.
Fenugreek seeds ; 1/4 tsp.
Fennel Seed : 1/4 tsp.
Mustard seeds : 1/4 tsp.
Take all these five spices in equal quantity and mix. Then use 1 tblsp. from the mix as tempering in this recipe
Asofoetida(hing) : 1/4 tsp.

How To :
  •  In a bowl, soak cauliflower florets in little water with a pinch for 1/2 an hour. Drain and then sprinkle little turmeric powder over them. 
  • In a pan, heat 11/2 tblsp. oil(preferably mustard oil) till smoking point, add cauliflower florets and fry them in medium heat, covered with a lid till they are half-cooked. It will take about 5-7 minutes. Remove and keep aside.
  • In the same oil, add 1-11/2 tblsp. oil, heat, add dry red chilli, 1 tblsp. panch phoron(five spice mix), lower the flame, when seeds start to crackle, add asofoetida, wait for few seconds, then add sliced onions and green chillies, fry till they change their color in medium heat. Add chopped capsicum, saute with onions for another 2 minutes. Then add ginger-garlic paste and chopped tomatoes. Saute for another 2 minutes or till tomato softens.
  • Add half-cooked cauliflower florets, turmeric and red chilli powder, mix well, then add beated curd/dahi/yoghurt. Lower the flame(otherwise the sauce will curdle) and mix well with spices. Add sugar and season with salt. Then add about 1/2 cup of warm water and let the veges cook through. 
  • When water evaporates, add amchur powder and chopped coriander leaves. Mix well everything and you are done.

This recipe is off to my ongoing event, "Spotlight : Indian Spice Tray - Panchphoron", where we are focusing on this awesome spice : Panch Phoron, like this recipe. I am requesting my fellow bloggers, to try our some awesome tasting recipes with this spice-mix..just give it a try, you won't regret.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014 / by / 4 Comments


  1. Indrani, the achari gobi looks simply delicious and mouthwatering. Lovely combination using cauliflower and capsicum.

  2. the achari looks so yum... love ur bowl..

  3. Very irresistible achari gobi, i want some to have with my curd rice.


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