Condiments. Basics.,  Indian. Sri Lankan.,  Malaysian. Indonesian.

Dried Prawn Pickle

dried prawns achar

Dried prawn pickle is very popular in the coastal towns of Kerala and Sri Lanka. Both these countries have their own version of the dried prawn pickle. In fact, I found that the Malays and Indonesians have their own version of the prawn pickles too. During my travels, I have tasted prawns pickle made of fresh prawns. Somehow I am a bit apprehensive about eating pickles made of fresh prawns but the dried prawn pickle are to die for. I not only eat the dried prawn pickle as an accompaniment to a simple meal but also use it as a sandwich spread, occasionally stir fry vegetables, noodles or rice with one or two tablespoons of it! You can store the dried prawn pickle in the refrigerator for up to six months. However, do remember to store it in glass or porcelain jars.

300 g dried prawns

Cooking oil for deep frying

20 dried chillies, soaked in water for 30 minutes

10 fresh red chillies

2 teaspoons turmeric powder

100 g shallots

40 g garlic cloves

50 g ginger

150 ml water

200 ml cooking oil

150 g tamarind mixed with 200 ml water and strained

2 tablespoons vinegar

1 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons sugar


  1. Heat oil for deep frying and deep fry the dried prawns till aromatic and slightly crispy. Drain and keep aside.
  2. Place the dried chillies, fresh chillies, turmeric powder, shallots, garlic cloves, ginger, water and half of the fried dried prawns into a blender and blend until smooth.
  3. Heat the 200 ml cooking oil and sauté the blended ingredients till oil separates.
  4. Add the tamarind water, vinegar, remaining dried prawns, salt and sugar and cook over medium heat till oil separates.
  5. Leave it to cool thoroughly before storing in jars.  



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