Lime and malagueta achar

Ark of taste
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Achar is a traditional pickle, with over 500 years of history. They were once produced on the Ilha de Moçambique, the ancient fortified capital of Portuguese East Africa, situated in the waters of the northern coast of the country and once an important port on the route to India. Achar is connected to the colonial past, influenced by exchanges with Arabic and Indian people, who were the first to bring spices. These gastronomic contaminations now characterize Mozambican gastronomic culture, especially of the coastal communities.
Achar – not coincidentally also omnipresent in India in many different varieties – is found all over Mozambique.
Especially the older women still know how to prepare these pickles, but it is a tradition that unfortunately is being lost.
The ingredients are hot chili peppers, called piri piri or malagueta, and limes (the small variety, locally called chirossana)
The preparation is slow: the first day the limes have to be sliced and sprinkled with salt, and then left to rest for a night. On the same day the piri piri are added to lime juice and the mixture is then boiled for 10 minutes, after which the chilies are removed from the juice. The next day, the limejuice (ca. 125 ml) is blended with three spoons of piri piri and a spoon of salt and then filtered.
The previously sliced and fermented limes are then put into a jar with the filtered juice, five garlic cloves and salt and left for another day. The next day the jar is placed in the sun, after which the lime achar is kept in a cool place for 15 days. It is then ready for being used as a condiment for a wide variety of dishes.

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