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Kerala Chemmeen Achar | Kerala Style Prawns Pickle

Kerala Chemmeen Achar



Kerala style spicy Prawn pickle.
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 20 minutes
Makes: 1 cup
Recipe source:Amma

  1. Chemmeen/Prawns- 500 gms
  2. Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
  3. Fenugreek seeds – 1/4 tsp
  4. Ginger,juliennes – 1.5 tbsp
  5. Garlic,sliced – 1.5 tbsp
  6. Curry leaves – 1 sprig
  7. Kashmiri chili powder – 1 tbsp( or according to taste)
  8. Turmeric powder – 1/2 tsp
  9. Vinegar- 1/4 cup
  10. Boiled and cooled water – 1/4 cup or as required
  11. Salt – to taste
  12. Oil – as required(gingelly oil or coconut oil,see notes)

For Marination:

  1. Red chili powder- 1 tsp
  2. Turmeric powder – 1/4 tsp
  3. Salt- to taste

For masala paste:

  1. Ginger- 2″ piece
  2. Garlic- 7 to 8 large cloves
  3. Green chilies – 4 to 6( or according to taste)


  • Coarsely grind together all the ingredients listed under ‘ For masala paste’.Keep aside until required.
  • Wash and clean the prawns.Marinate the prawns with the ingredients listed under ‘ for marination’.Keep aside for 15 to 20 minutes.Heat oil in a pan and shallow fry the prawns,turning once in between.
  • Once it is done,drain and keep aside until required.
  • Add more oil ( if required) to the same pan,add mustard seeds and let it splutter.Next add fenugreek seeds and saute for few seconds.
  • Add ginger,garlic and curry leaves , saute until  raw smell disappears.
  • Now add the prepared ginger-garlic-green chili paste , saute until raw smell leaves completely.
  • Cook over medium low flame for few more minutes until oil starts to separate.In a bowl ,mix together kashmiri chili powder,turmeric powder and vinegar to form a smooth paste.Add this masala paste to the pan. Add salt to taste.
  • Cook over medium low flame for few minutes ,until oil starts to separate.Next add the fried prawns and mix well.
  • Add boiled and cooled water as required.Bring this to a boil .Cook for 1 or 2 minutes.Switch off the stove and allow this to cool completely before transferring to an airtight-glass jar.


  • I used coconut oil to fry the prawns and gingelly oil to prepare the gravy.
  • Always use clean and dry spoon to take the pickle.
  • You can store the pickle at room temperature for upto 1 week.Refrigerate if you want to keep it for long.
  • For best results,keep the pickle undisturbed for 1 or 2 days for the flavor to develop.
  • To avoid  spoilage,you may pour 1 or 2 tbsp boiled and cooled gingelly oil over the pickle.
  • Adjust the quantity of green chilies and  chili powder , according to your taste.

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  • Reply
    January 25, 2015 at 9:50 am

    drooling…heavily…love this…

  • Reply
    October 22, 2015 at 7:34 am

    Very nice

  • Reply
    sindhu peter
    October 3, 2016 at 8:12 am

    I love chewing garlic pods. I don't cut them or grind. But anything I do by myself before I cook anything it could be I search for your recipe. Thank you Maria. You are an inspiration…

  • Reply
    November 4, 2016 at 8:55 am

    Amazing recipe will be doing it again.

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