Mango atchar
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Johanne 14

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Johanne 14


Mango atchar

Recipe By Hope Malau
Photographs By Craig Fraser


80 ml (⅓ cup) canola oil
10 ml (2 tsp) mustard seeds
5 ml (1 tsp) cumin seeds
3 red chillies, chopped
5 garlic cloves, chopped
5 ml (1 tsp) fenugreek seeds
1 cm piece of ginger, grated
1 dried bay leaf
15 ml (1 tbsp) red chilli powder
1 ml (¼ tsp) ground turmeric
2,5 ml (½ tsp) salt
5 medium green mangoes, cubed
45 ml (3 tbsp) white wine vinegar

This spicy traditional South African Indian pickle is usually served alongside curries, but in the townships it’s enjoyed with magwinya/vetkoek, pap, cabbage or eggs. Many households in the township make extra income by selling atchar. Kids are sent to go buy atchar at a specific house with a coffee cup.

Cooking Instructions

  1. Heat the oil in a non-stick pan over medium heat. Add mustard seeds and when they start to splutter, add cumin and chilli. Stir-fry for a couple of minutes.
  2. Add garlic and stir-fry. Add fenugreek seeds and stir-fry for 1 second. Add ginger and bay leaf, and stir-fry for 1 second.
  3. Combine chilli powder, turmeric and salt, and add to the pan together with mango. Stir-fry for a couple of minutes.
  4. Add vinegar and stir-fry for a couple of minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to cool.
  5. Sterilise glass canning jars and dry them well. When the atchar has cooled completely, bottle it and screw on the lids so the seal is airtight. Wait at least 2 days before serving the atchar.

About the Author

Chef Hope Malau grew up in Klerksdorp in the North West Province eating traditional Sotho food prepared by his dad, who worked in a mine kitchen. Instilled with a deep love for cooking from an early age, Hope went on to study at the Professional Cooking Academy in Rustenburg before garnering experience at various restaurants in Cape Town. Hope is currently the deputy food editor for Taste magazine and has also won the prestigious Galliova Food Writer of the Year award in 2015 and 2016.

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