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Mastering the Art of Pickling: Five Simple Rules for Success

Updated: Jul 10

Mastering the Art of Pickling: Five Simple Rules for Success
Mastering the Art of Pickling: Five Simple Rules for Success

Some people’s pickles are always awesome (our mothers and grandmothers in particular were connoisseurs of this art) while others struggle to get it right. The taste, texture and charm are either missing or are inconsistent. So what can one do? What’s going wrong?

Here are five simple rules that form the basics of making great pickles.

1. Right Ingredients: Go for the best, freshest natural ingredients you can find, whether you are pickling mangoes or lemons or any other fruit or vegetable. No stale items… and please, no stuff from the cold-storage!

2. Right Preservative: For Indian pickles, the preferred preservative is cold-pressed Mustard Oil. That is because Mustard Oil has powerful antibacterial, antifungal and antimicrobial properties that prevent mould or pathogens from spoiling the ingredients. Choose your Mustard Oil carefully – don’t get tricked into buying low-pungency or refined variants; only natural cold-pressed Mustard Oil will do.

3. Right Weather: There’s a very good reason why pickling is done only during the “Pickling Season”. It requires bright, hot sunshine and dry weather. You can’t do pickling in humid weather. Moisture ruins pickles – and the sun is needed for the pickles to mature.

4. Right Equipment: The pickling process involves the use of airtight pickling jars and clean, dry muslin cloth and string for maturing the pickles in the sun. Don’t substitute the equipment with other utensils (like stainless steel bowls) – it won’t work. You need the right jars, and you need to sterilize them before use.

5. Right Recipe: The blend of ingredients, oil and spices has to be just right. A random mixture won’t give you consistent results. Follow the recipe carefully. This blog has many pickle recipes for you to choose from.

You can find more recipes at:

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