Puli Inji or Instant Ginger Pickle with video. Puli Inji is an instant pickle that is made with tender, young ginger and green chillies, cooked and stewed in a tamarind sauce. It tastes tangy, spicy and hot.
A healthy pickle that is good for digestion and helps keep a clean gut. It is also vegan and gluten free.
I serve this as side with almost anything. Be it curd rice, rava upma, dosa, pooris, like I said it goes well with everything.
I don’t prefer eating the green chillies in it but stick to eating only the ginger pieces.
As we prefer this pickle made only with young ginger, this is most often made only during the prime season.
At other times we stick to other regular pickles that are made to be around the year.
Though we have used ginger and green chillies, it would not be really that spicy as you fear. The bitterness of the fenugreek, tang from the tamarind and the sweet of the jaggery will provide the much needed balance.
This is also served as a part of the Kerala Sadhya that is served during Onam and other important special occasions as one of the important condiments.
How to select Ginger?
It is always better to choose and use young and tender ginger for puli inji.
It tastes best with new ginger when the season starts as they are more aromatic, succulent and juicy.
Use fresh ginger always and make it on the same day you buy it from the shop.
Do not use the ones that have been stored for 3 to 4 days at room temperature as they tend to lose moisture and are already drying out.
Avoid using aged or mature ginger as much as possible.
What other vegetables can I use to make this pickle?
During the season time, you can replace ginger with Mango Ginger (maa inji) and make this pickle following the same method.
You can also fresh turmeric root instead of ginger.
What is the shelf life of Puli Inji?
You can store at room temperature upto a fortnight.
I have even stored it upto a month though it started changing to a dark colour due to oxidisation.
If you want to preserve the colour and wish to store it for longer duration, store in the fridge.
But I would not recommend this as the oil tends to solidify and become hard.
Always make small batches of puli inji to ensure freshness and you can also store it at room temperature itself.
Important tips while making puli inji:
You can either dice the ginger or slice it thin using a mandolin.
Make sure not to burn fenugreek while roasting, else the entire dish will taste bitter.
Use sesame oil for authentic taste.
Always use crystal or rock salt instead of table salt. This also acts as a preservative.
You can also check out other pickles from the blog,
Puli Inji Video Tutorial:
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Puli Inji Recipe card with Video below:
Puli Inji - Instant Ginger Pickle
- Ginger - 100 gms
- Green chillies - 7 to 8 nos
- Tamarind – 1 lemon size
- Fenugreek seeds – ½ tsp
- Mustard seeds – ½ tsp
- Turmeric powder – ½ tsp
- Asafoetida – ¼ tsp
- Jaggery – 1 betel nut size or 2 tsp
- Sesame oil – ¼ cup + 1 tbsp
- Rock Salt – 1 fistful
- Soak tamarind in ½ cup of hot water for 10 to 15 mins. Extract juice and set aside.
- Soak Ginger in water for 10 to 15 mins. Scrub with a brush if too muddy to get rid of dirt. Rinse well and peel the skin using a metal spoon. Dice into small pieces and set aside.
- Wash the green chillies. Remove stalk and wipe with a kitchen towel or dry under a fan to get rid of any moisture. Cut each chilli into 3 or 4 pieces and set aside.
How to make puli inji:
- Make fenugreek powder: Heat a pan and simmer the flame. Add fenugreek seeds and roast it well. Keep tossing frequently. The colour should become dark in colour. Take off stove and let it cool completely.
- Transfer to a mixie jar and grind to a fine powder. Set aside.
- Heat the same pan. Add 1 tablespoon sesame oil and when it gets hot, add ginger and green chillies.
- Saute well for both of them to get coated well with oil. Add turmeric powder and saute over medium flame for 2 to 3 mins.
- The ginger should have lost the moisture a bit and have shrunk a bit in size and the skin of the green chillies should become blistered. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
- To the same pan, add ¼ cup sesame oil. When it gets hot, add mustard seeds and let it splutter.
- Add asafoetida and let it roast in oil. Add tamarind extract and let it come to a boil.
- Add sautéed ginger and green chillies, fenugreek powder, rock salt and jaggery. Mix well to combine.
- Cook over medium flame for 3 to 4 mins and then simmer for another 2 mins.
- The gravy would look glossy by now and all the oil added would have separated and standing on top.
- Give it a mix and switch off the stove. Let it cool down completely to room temperature.
- Transfer to a clean, dry jar and use when required. Always use a clean spoon.
- Serve as a side dish with rice, upma or poori.
- Puli Inji stays well at room temperature for a fortnight. To store it for longer duration, store in the refrigerator.
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