Tangy Achari Aloo + Achari Spice Mix Recipe

Achari aloo is a unique Indian potato dish with tangy and spicy flavors!  It is made with an Indian pickling spice blend!

Achari aloo in a pot with cilantro leaves.

Achari aloo is a unique Indian potato dish with tangy and spicy flavors!  It is made with an Indian pickling spice blend! Achari aloo masala uses a Punjabi-style pickle masala.  I have a Gujarati-style achaar masala up already.

The Indian pickling spices add the perfect balance of tangy and spicy to this dish.

The Achari spice mix, with its blend of aromatic seeds, adds a delightful pickle-like flavor to the potatoes, creating a unique and flavorful dish.

Achari masala (pickle masala) can be used in Indian pickle recipes such as Carrot Pickle, Athela Marcha, 

Ingredients

It’s an easy dish, don’t be overwhelmed by the ingredients. The Indian pickling spice mix makes the list of ingredients look longer 🙂

Achari spice mix whole spices on a plate.
Whole spices are roasted, cooled, and ground to make the achari spice mix.

The Achari spice mix is a blend of whole spices that’s commonly used to infuse dishes with the flavors reminiscent of Indian pickles. Here’s a brief overview of the ingredients in the Achari spice mix:

Coriander Seeds: Coriander seeds have a warm, citrusy, and slightly nutty flavor. They add depth to the spice mix and help balance the overall taste.

Mustard Seeds: Mustard seeds provide a pungent and slightly bitter taste. They contribute a sharp kick and are a key element in creating the distinctive “achari” flavor.

Cumin Seeds: Cumin seeds have a earthy, nutty, and slightly peppery flavor. They are a common spice in Indian cuisine and add a rich complexity to the mix.

Fennel Seeds: Fennel seeds have a sweet and slightly licorice-like taste. They add a hint of sweetness and aromatic undertones to the mix.

Fenugreek Seeds: Fenugreek seeds have a slightly bitter taste with a hint of maple-like aroma. They bring a unique and somewhat tangy flavor to the spice mix.

Carom Seeds: Also known as ajwain, have a strong and distinctive flavor. They are slightly peppery and thyme-like, contributing to the overall piquant profile of the mix.

Ingredients for Achari Aloo

Ingredients for achari aloo on a plate.

Potatoes: Potatoes are the main ingredient, providing a starchy and hearty base for the dish. 

Often made with baby potatoes, but I just used regular potatoes which is what I had on hand. I cut them into potato wedges.

Oil: So, this dish is often made with mustard oil.  So, you can use that if you like or just use a neutral oil like canola oil.

Kalonji, jeera, and rai in a plate.
Mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and nigella seeds are used in the tempering for this dish.

Kalonji (Nigella Seeds):

  • Kalonji adds a slightly bitter and nutty flavor to the dish. It’s a common ingredient in Indian cuisine and contributes to the overall aromatic profile.

Cumin Seeds and Mustard Seeds:

  • These seeds are used for tempering and provide a burst of flavor as they sizzle in hot oil. They add depth and a distinct “achari” taste to the dish.

Asafoetida:

  • Asafoetida, also known as hing, is a resin with a strong and pungent aroma. It’s used sparingly to enhance the overall flavor and aid in digestion.

Ginger-garlic Paste: This paste adds a rich and aromatic foundation to the dish.  

Green Chili: I finely chopped fresh green chilies. You can also use green chili paste.

Onions: I used red onion.  Sliced onions add sweetness and texture to the dish. They caramelize as they cook, adding a lovely flavor and color.

Powdered spices in a plate.
Salt, kashmiri chili powder, turmeric, and amchur.

Spice Powders: Kashmiri Chili Powder and Turmeric, Amchur (Dry Mango Powder):

  • Common Indian spices are used: 
  • Kashmiri chili powder provides a vibrant red color and mild heat. Turmeric adds color and a warm, earthy flavor.
  • Amchur contributes a tangy and slightly sour taste to the dish. It balances the spices and adds a delightful zing.

Salt:

  • Salt enhances the overall flavors of the dish, bringing out the taste of the other ingredients and spices.

Variations: You can also make this as achari gobi by substituting the potato with cauliflower, achari bhindi (okra), or achari paneer.

Instructions for the Achari Spice Mix

Achari spice blend spices in a pan being roasted.
Dry roast whole spices in a pan on medium-low heat.
Achari spices cooling in a plate.
Cool spices on a plate.
Achari spice mix on a plate.
Freshly ground achari spice mix – a slightly coarse blend is ok!

In a dry pan, roast all the spices (coriander seeds, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, fenugreek seeds, carom seeds) over low to medium heat. Roast them until they release a fragrant aroma and slightly darken in color. Be careful not to burn them.

Once roasted, remove the spices from the pan and let them cool down.

Grind the cooled roasted spices into a fine powder using a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder. Your Achari spice mix is ready. Set it aside for use in the Achari Aloo.

Instructions for Achari Aloo:

Boil potatoes in a pot of water.  Let cool, peel, and cut into approximate equal size 1 inch pieces.

Potatoes cut in halve and then pieces.
Slice potatoes in halves and then into 5-6 pieces.
Cut potatoes on a cutting board.
Then cut into halves to form potato chunks.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a pan on medium heat.  Add cut potatoes and mix well.  Let cook about 4 minutes or until you get a bit of browning. Remove potatoes and place on the side.

Potato wedges in a pan.
Heat oil and add potatoes.
Browned potatoes in a pan.
Cook until potatoes brown a bit – this will give yummy texture.

In same pan, add remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and heat at medium heat. Add kalonji, cumin seeds, mustard seeds, and a pinch of asafoetida. Let the seeds splutter.

Add garlic ginger paste. Sauté for a minute until fragrant. Add onions and let cook 2 minutes.   

Mustard seeds, kalonji seeds, and cumin seeds in oil in a pan.
Once oil is hot, add mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and kalonji seeds.
Ginger garlic paste and red onions added to pan.
Add ginger garlic paste, mix and cook one minute. Next add onions and let cook two minutes.

Add green chilies and mix.  Follow that with kashmiri chili powder, turmeric powder.

Green chilies added to pan.
Add finely chopped green chilies.
Green chilies and spices added to pan.
Add turmeric, kashmiri chili powder and mix well.

Add the peeled and cubed potatoes, salt, and achari spice mix. Mix well to coat them with the spices.

Add water, mix, and cover pot.  Let cook five minutes ,allowing the flavors to meld and the spices to infuse into the potatoes. .Stir occasionally to prevent sticking. 

Cubed potatoes, achari spice mix, and salt added to pan.
Potatoes tossed in spices in a pan.
Mix well to coat potatoes with spices.

Once the potatoes are cooked through and tender (check with a fork or a knife), turn off gas and finish the dish with chopped cilantro leaves.

Achari aloo in a pan with cilantro leaves.

Serve the Achari Aloo hot as a side dish with roti, naan, or rice.

Serving

Serve achari aloo as main course with an Indian bread such as Bhakri, Jowar Roti, naan, etc.  Yogurt is a great accompaniment to cool down from all the spices.

Kakdi koshimibir (pictured below) is a quick salad  you can serve alongside it for a hearty meal.

Jowar roti, achari aloo, and kakdi koshimbir on a plate.

Have you tried this easy homemade achari aloo recipe? If so, I would greatly appreciate it if you could leave a comment and rate it with stars. It would mean a lot to me to hear how it turned out. If you’re on Instagram, please tag me so I can see your creation. Thank you for your support!

Achari aloo in a pot with cilantro leaves.

Tangy Achari Aloo + Achari Spice Mix Recipe

Shilpa Joshi
Achari aloo is a unique Indian potato dish with tangy and spicy flavors!  It is made with an Indian pickling spice blend!
5 from 1 vote
Course Main Course
Cuisine Indian
Servings 4 servings
Calories 248 kcal

Equipment

  • 1 pan
  • 1 knife
  • 1 cutting board
  • 1 Pot to boil potatoes in

Ingredients
  

Achari Spice Mix

  • tsp coriander seeds coriander seeds, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, fenugreek seeds, carom seeds
  • tsp mustard seeds
  • ¾ tsp cumin seeds
  • ¾ tsp fennel seeds
  • ½ tsp fenugreek seeds
  • ¾ tsp carom seeds ajwain
  • 3 potatoes 750g
  • 3 tbsp oil in parts – 1 tbsp to cook potatoes then 2 for the the tadka
  • ¼ tsp kalonji
  • ¼ tsp cumin seeds
  • ¼ tsp mustard seeds
  • ¼ tsp asafoetida
  • tbsp garlic ginger paste
  • 2 green chillies chopped finely
  • ¼ cup onions chopped, 38g
  • 1 tsp kashmiri chili powder
  • ¼ tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp amchur (mango powder)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • ¼ cup water

Instructions
 

Make Achari Spice Mix

  • In a dry pan, roast all the spices (coriander seeds, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, fennel seeds, fenugreek seeds, carom seeds) over low to medium heat. Roast them until they release a fragrant aroma and slightly darken in color. Be careful not to burn them.
  • Once roasted, remove the spices from the pan and let them cool down.
  • Grind the cooled roasted spices into a fine powder using a mortar and pestle or a spice grinder. Your Achari spice mix is ready.

Achari Aloo

  • Boil potatoes in a pot of water. Let cool, peel, and cut into approximate equal size 1 inch pieces.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a pan on medium heat. Add cut potatoes and mix well. Let cook about 4 minutes or until you get a bit of browning. Remove potatoes and place on the side.
  • In same pan, add remaining 2 tablespoons of oil and heat at medium heat. Add kalonji, cumin seeds, mustard seeds, and a pinch of asafoetida. Let the seeds splutter.
  • Add garlic ginger paste. Sauté for a minute until fragrant. Add onions and let cook 2 minutes.
  • Add green chilies and mix. Follow that with kashmiri chili powder, turmeric powder.
  • Add the peeled and cubed potatoes, salt, and achari spice mix. Mix well to coat them with the spices.
  • Add water, mix, and cover pot. Let cook five minutes ,allowing the flavors to meld and the spices to infuse into the potatoes. .Stir occasionally to prevent sticking.
  • Once the potatoes are cooked through and tender (check with a fork or a knife), turn off gas and finish the dish with chopped cilantro leaves.
  • Serve the Achari Aloo hot as a side dish with roti, naan, or rice.

Nutrition

Calories: 248kcalCarbohydrates: 32gProtein: 4gFat: 12gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0.04gSodium: 671mgPotassium: 730mgFiber: 6gSugar: 3gVitamin A: 11IUVitamin C: 35mgCalcium: 42mgIron: 2mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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