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May 21, 2008

Authentic South Indian Lemon Pickle / nimbekai uppinkai

Authentic Lemon Pickle is one spicy tangy pickle that is usually served with curd rice in south India. A pickle lover would have this pickle with dosa, iddli, curd rice or even rasam rice sometimes even chapathis. It is usually prepared once a year and is preserved in a dry porcelin jar or a glass jar. Please note that only dry spoon has to be used while taking the pickle from the jar. Do not use wet spoon. This pickle stays fresh for atlest a year. This is my mom's recipe and here is how she prepares in the most authentic way.


Lemon (yellow) - 20 count

Salt as required

Turmeric Powder - 1 teaspoon

Red chilli powder - 3/4th cup

fenugreek seeds - 5 teaspoons

Oil - 1 cup

Mustard seeds - 3 teaspoons

Asafoetida powder - 1 teaspoon


Cut the lemon into 8 parts and trasfer it to a large dry porcelin jar/glass jar.

After cutting 4 lemons, add salt to coat the cut lemons.

Repeat this process until all the lemons are cut.

Mix in turmeric powder and keep it closed.

Shake the jar once everyday for one week to 10 days.

If the salt is less the lemons will decay due to fungus.

After this period the lemon will become soft.

Dry roast the fenugreek seeds and grind it.

Mix red chilli powder and ground fenugreek to the salted lemon.

Heat the oil and turn off the heat. Let the heat come down a little.

Then, add the mustard seeds and asafoetida powder and keep it aside until the oil comes to room temperature.

Gently mix the seasoned oil to the lemon.

Keep it closed in a jar. Be cautious not to get the pickle in contact with water. Use only clean dry spoon to scoop the pickle.

This pickle is very delicious specially with curd rice. Nothing can beat this combination. A south Indian will definitely agree to this.

This is my entry to 'Putting up' event hosted by Pixie and Rosie.


Sreelu said...

Mythreyee ,

Hmm love lemon pickle with yogurt rice, thats soul food

Vani said...

I always have nimbekayi uppinakayi in my house - though never made by me, so far! :) And you're right - with curd rice, it is awesome!I love nimbekayi uppinkayi mixed with just rice & oil too!

Anjali Damerla said...

I just made this pickle about 2 months back. I used the yellow sweet lemon. This variety has thinner peel and lots of juice.

Pixie said...

Such a great entry for the event as I absolutely adore lemon pickle. Thank you.

Rajesh &Shankari said...

Wow..the colors are so rich, I am sure the pickle is hot..

Rosie said...

This sounds such and looks a wonderful pickle :) Many thanks for partaking in this event :)

Rosie x

Rosie said...

This sounds such and looks a wonderful pickle :) Many thanks for partaking in this event :)

Rosie x

FH said...

I love to brush some on Chapatis too, tastes so good. Great entry Myth, enjoy the long weekend!:)

Mythreyee said...

Sreelu: It's my favorite too.

Vani: Hi Vani, is that you in the picture? Ya, with curd rice I think it makes a heavenly combo. I like it with plain rice too sometimes.

Anjali Damerla:Thanks for the info. I was just wondering which one would have thinner peel.

Pixie: Your welcome :-)

Shankari: ya, it is hot.

Rosie: Thanks:-) it is my pleasure to participate in the event.

Asha: Me too.. I love to have it with chapathis. A handy one when I don't make a curry for chapathi.

FewMinute Wonders said...

Lemon pickle yum-O. Looking at it makes my mouth water and my nose smell the pickle. A comfort pickle to most people. Good entry.

Mythreyee said...

thanks srimathi.

Uma said...

the lemon pickle is so good. lovely entry.

Jenny said...

This is great! Thank you!

Unknown said...

Hi Mythreyee,

Pickle looks so clorful n yummy.. Can u plz tell me numberoflemons:salt proportion, as i'm a beginner in pickle making. And i hav heard without sufficient salt pickle's shelf life will decrease

Chennaimoms said...

Very tempting mouth is watering...

Mugdha said...

Looks delicious...In Orissa also we prepare this of my fav from childhood...thanx for the recipe..:)

Arpitha said...

I tried this with a handful of lemons and it was such a big hit that i am now in the process of pickling 40 giant lemons :) Thanks for the recipe , it is way delicious than it looks in the picture!