08 September 2020

Vella Naranga Achar | White Lemon Pickle Kerala Style - A sadya pickle recipe


Vella Naranga Achaar means white lemon pickle in Malayalam. This is a special lemon pickle which stays quite transparent and colorful unlike other lemon pickles which would otherwise look red-dish, full of spices and preservatives like vinegar. This white lemon pickle Kerala style is made with lemons, garlic, bird eye chili/Kaandaari mullag in Malayalam and with a dash of a very few spices.

So, this pickle looks yellow, green, red and white with small mustard seeds here and there, overall it looks not only visually appealing but also simply appetizing. Most importantly, this white lemon pickle can be made instantly and can be served instantly too.That's why it is also called curry style lemon pickle/Curry naranga achaar. I wonder if there is anything to hate about this pickle. Not/nothing for me!!


Reminds me of school days, when I used to come back home after a very hectic day (fewer studies and more chatambitaraams/naughtiness), my mother used to wait for me outside and once I got refreshed, she would serve me food like my fav. : hot rice with my fav.fish pomfret fry or meen thoran (fish and coconut recipe), some thorans/stir-fry made with some vegetable and coconut, salad, and this vella naranaga achar/white lemon pickle on the side. Oh, my....simply finger licking.... always made my day ...


The simplicity of making this instant white lemon pickle and the mouth watering taste it has,is something beyond words. Besides, I believe this is certainly one of the healthiest tasty pickle I know ... So, I always wanted to know how to prepare this instant white lemon pickle for sure and amma told me several times as well but since I've an amazing memory,I would always forget. So, this time I finally learned how to make this white lemon pickle Kerala style ....It is so easy peasy delicious...huraayyy πŸ™Œ

RELATED:Kadumaanga Achar|A cut Mango pickle recipe Kerala style

By the way, honey P won't dare to finish this pickle that easily as it has generous amount of kaandaari mulag/super hot bird eye small chilies hahaha πŸ‘…πŸ˜‚πŸ‘...On a second thought, wait ! 😦 Honey P actually likes chilies and sometimes I call him a Parrot 😏... So again it may be tricky, there is a fair chance he may gradually complete the pickle regardless 😟😬...Daivammaey /Hey Ram

If it happens, then by all powers vested in me,I would declare honey P as honey Parrot πŸ™ŠπŸ™‰πŸ˜ŽπŸ˜‰ #SOS


Vella Naranga Achar or curry style white lemon pickle is one of the main pickle of Kerala's grand feast,Sadya prepared mainly on auspicious occasions like Onam,Vishu,wedding and other celebrations in Kerala ....

RELATED:Spicy lemon pickle recipe Kerala style

Like Benjamin Franklin said, "Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn."

So, as amma was preparing this pickle for the Onam last week, I made it a point to watch and capture the process as well and usually people would steam the lemon to make its skin soft for this pickle but my mother skips it .. Well, that made this lazy daughter happy as I can prepare the pickle with a step less then....

So, here is how we make this curry style instant vella naranga achar with the same traditional taste ...

Vella Naranga Achar|White Lemon Pickle Kerala Style


Lemon, small,chopped  5 Nos.

Garlic, peeled,small 10 Nos.

Green/Red chilies (Kandaari/Bird eye's chili), halved  A handful (Adjust as per spiciness required)

Water,boiled and cooled off  1/2 cup (add more if needed) 

Asafoetida, An inch or  1/2 to 1 Tsp of readymade powder

Gingely oil/Sesame oil 1/4th cup + 1 Tsp for sauteing Asafoetida piece

Mustard seeds 1 to 2 Tsp

Dry red chilies,broken 2 Nos.

Turmeric powder 1/4th Tsp

Curry leaves A few

Salt to taste

Sugar 1 Tsp (optional)

Preparation method of this pickle 

  1. Wash the lemons, pat and dry them well.
  2. Cut them into quarter size or cut them again into smaller pieces. Keep them aside.
  3. Peel the garlic and slit them into half.
  4. Wash and break the stem off the small chilies and slit them into half.
  5. Boil little water and let it cool off.
  6. Heat  little oil in a pan and sautΓ© an inch of asafoetida on lower flame. Put off the flame. Once it cools off,pound it into powder or use 1/2 Tsp of Asafoetida ready-made powder. Keep it aside.
  7. Heat oil in a pan / kadai and splutter mustard seeds.
  8. Saute broken red chilies on lower flame.
  9. Add in the garlic and chilies and sautΓ© until they turn soft and change color lightly.
  10. Add in the turmeric powder and sautΓ© on low flame.
  11. Add in the lemon pieces and saute until they turn soft and change color slightly.
  12. Add the boiled water that cooled off until it covers the entire lemon and other stuffs.
  13. Then add the asafoetida powder .Stir well.
  14. Add salt to taste.
  15. Add a few curry leaves too.
  16. Let it come to a boiling point.Then put off the flame.
  17. Allow it to cool off.
  18. Transfer everything into a sterilized dry glass jar/bottle.


1. If you are gonna use large garlic pods, you may take 10 or less garlic pods and do slice them vertically into 2 to 3 pieces.

2. Any chili can be used.Best is the Bird eye or piri piri chili or Kaandaari mulag in Malayalam.Any long chili cut them into small pieces like an inch long each..

3.Some people also add ginger pieces ,but we don't.Or ,you can use 1 tsp to 1 Tbsp of chopped ginger as per your taste for a variety.

4.This is an instant pickle ,good for 2 to 3  weeks if refrigerated properly.For longer use, prepare larger quantity and add 3 Tbsp of vinegar, boiled and cooled off at last to the pickle as a preservative.

5. A tsp of sugar at last enhances the taste of the pickle and balances any bitterness there off.

6.Always use clean,dry,sterilized bottles or ceramic jars only.Avoid plastics.

7.Use always dry spoon to scoop out any pickle to prevent it from developing fungus.

8.Use lemons that are spotless for best taste.

9.You my omit curry leaves if you wish.

OR,do watch this quick pickle video that shows step by step method to prepare this pickle at home. Hope it will be helpful.


I have never seen this white lemon pickle at store till now. Maybe a mother's touch is what makes this pickle awesome and takes it to another level that can't be bought.Of course anyone can prepare it but it's every mother's unique take/recipe that makes it homely and special I think. 


Malayalees (not all though), nowadays may not find it "good-to-flaunt" that this pickle tastes awesome with kanji and payar that is rice gruel and moong dal-coconut stir-fry, which used to be a comfort food at every home regardless once upon a time but now it is usually considered by many as poor people's food or sick day's food mainly. I have heard malayalis lowering their voice when they absent-mindedly mention pazhakanji/rice gruel or denying that they love rice gruel, some even mock people who love to eat kanji,some even use kanji as a swear word ... Aiyooo statusnnu mosham alley ? πŸ˜ŽπŸ˜‰πŸ˜€πŸ˜œAnyways,this pickle is one of the best friend of kanji, they stand for "Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.":) 

So,this is one of my favorite pickle .I love to eat it with kanji payar or chapathi and some non spicy curry and my most favourite way is an adipoli yet simple combo of hot boiled rice,chammandi,thorans,fish fry and this pickle on side. That would be my killer meal of the day. And I can't wait to prepare this pickle by myself now .Exciting !!! 


 How about you ? You should also give it a try . This lemon pickle is super healthy,a good healthy dose of lemon,garlic,ginger,chili,curry leaves, asafoetida and just little oil. Sounds like an apt pickle for boosting immunity and making food more yummy.Hope you will give it a shot and love it.

Please take good care of yourself ! #StaySafe

(CNN (<-Click for the link))If people washed their hands regularly, wore masks, and kept their social distance from each other, these three simple behaviors could stop most of the Covid-19 pandemic, even without a vaccine or additional treatments, according to a new study. PLS DO NOT FORGET!!


P.S.Sending healing telepathically to Arjun sir and "M"a'am and wishing speedy recovery .God bless !πŸ˜ŠπŸ™