Achar Recipe (Nonya Spicy Mixed Vegetables)
February 13, 2014
Achar or achar is a hot favourite among asians. In the olden days, people make it when they wanted a way to preserve foods for a longer period and at the same time being able to use them as accompaniments to compliment the main course. But now we eat it because it tastes so good!
I got a huge organic cucumber from Uncle Martin and I was wondering what can I do with it. When I got home and saw my relatives from China, I suddenly remembered that they love to eat achar! So I decided to do it!
This is the first time I make achar. I thought it was pretty simple. I just have to mix all the vegetables together and let them soak in the flavours of all the spices and I am done. Sounds really simple but wahbiang! The preparation took me a long time!
First I try to cut all the vegetables which was soooooooooooooo tedious! I have to think how I want my carrots to look. Long thin stripes or big pieces? Plus I bought organic carrots which are much smaller, so it makes the job harder. Then I have to slice the cucumber. Do I slice it lengthwise or width wise? How long do I have to cut it? Then to cabbage… and lastly to pineapple which is the easiest. Heng I didn’t get the whole pineapple fruit, because I don’t really eat pineapple and I don’t know how to cut it.
After finishing cutting all the vegetables and setting them aside to dry excess liquid, I continue to cut my spices. First I cut the red chillies which is the easiest. Then I cut the shallots and garlic and I start crying LOL. Not my first time in the kitchen but I thought I was tough enough to be able to cut shallots without placing them under running tap. So I was wrong. Then I blend them together while I was still crying. LOL.
In summary, I CUT ALL THE INGREDIENTS MYSELF. Without any help. A round of applause please. lolol
So hor this achar is really made with my sweat and tears! HAHA! Plus I bought organic carrots, organic cabbage and together with Uncle Martin’s organic cucumber, which makes this a super expensive ORGANIC ACHAR! And the taste is good lah! When I retire next time, maybe I can make some achar and sell it. I think I will sell it at $5 lor, so much work! So before I decided to sell my achar, please go and try the recipe! You probably need a salad maker if you don’t wish to do the cutting!
Achar (Nonya Style Picked Vegetables)
- 300 g Cucumber – cut lengthwise 1½ inch
- 150 g Cabbage – roughly cut into big pieces
- 50 g Carrot – peeled and cut into 1½ inch
- 4 slices of pineapple – cut into 1½ inch
- 50 g Roasted Peanuts – ground
- 2 tablespoon White Sesame Seeds – roasted
- 1 tablespoon Salt
- 1 tablespoon Sugar or to taste
- 3 tablespoons Cooking Oil
- 50 ml Rice vinegar
- 5 Shallots
- 6 fresh Red Chilies
- 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
- 2 Candlenuts
- 30 ml Water
Mix all the vegetables with 1 tbs salt. Leave aside in a colander to dry excess liquid for about 30 minutes to get the crunchiness. If you prefer your vegetables to have softer bite, you can skip this step.
Blend the spice paste in a food processor.
Heat up the wok on medium heat. Add oil to stir-fry the spice paste until aromatic. Add vinegar and water, bring to boil. Add salt and sugar to taste.
Turn off fire, add all vegetables, ground peanuts, sesame seeds into the wok and stir well.
Dish out, let it cool to store in a jar or container. Keep chilled in the fridge. Achar taste best overnight after the flavours have developed. It can last for about 4 weeks.
Adapted from Just As Delish
I share my hard work with some of my friends! 😀