Penang Achar

Penang Achar

Achar is a word used in many Indo-Aryan languages for “Indian pickle.” This dish is composed of a variety of vegetables that are essentially pickled by being blanched in vinegar.

This achar is particularly delicious to be eaten the next day when all ingredients infuse together. We prepared this dish during our Penang Cooking Class, which was served with Tomato Rice and Chicken Rendang.

Penang Achar (recipe by Nazlina)


  • 1/2 cucumber (remove seeds and cut into thick strips)
  • 1 small carrot (sliced or cut into the same shape as the cucumber)
  • 1 C white vinegar
  • ¼ of a small cabbage (cut into squares)
  • 5 french beans (sliced diagonally about 1 inch in lenght)
  • 1 small cauliflower floret
  • 1 tbs peanuts (dry roasted, peeled and pounded finely)
  • 1 tbs sesame seeds (dry roasted)
  • 6 pieces of dried chilies (boil to soften them, remove seeds and pound finely together with 1 inch turmeric or 1 tsp turmeric powder)
  • Salt and sugar to taste
  • 4 pips of garlic (peeled and sliced thinly)
  • 3 tbs cooking oil


Coat cucumber with a sprinkling of salt to remove more water, set aside.


Blanch all vegetables in simmering vinegar, one type by another.

blanching the veggies in vinegar to "pickle" them

Dry all veggie pieces on the tray to remove excess liquid. Leave it overnight in the fridge if you have the time to make sure the vinegar is
absorbed well by the vegetables.

Heat oil, fry garlic slices till golden, remove from oil. Prepare the chili paste (boil the dried chili to soften, remove seeds and pound finely together with 1 inch turmeric or 1 tsp turmeric powder).

hand ground chilli paste + fried garlic

Sauté chili paste with turmeric using the same oil until it looks “crispy.”

saute the chilli paste with tumeric

Add in vegetables pieces, coat evenly with the spices. Add in sesame seed and peanuts and fried garlic. Sprinkle salt and sugar to taste and enjoy!

pickled veggies + toasted sesame + peanuts

2 Responses to “Penang Achar”
  1. colleen woo says:

    yummy, looks good.

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