Thursday, July 18, 2013

Sirkewala peyaz...pickled onion

One of the most interesting thing in any North Indian restaurant is the pink pearl like onions that goes with most of the dishes, be it tandoori chicken or some hot naan with chicken tikka masala. Little sweet, vinegar soaked onions are called Sirkewala Peyaz. Sirka means vinegar and peyaz means onion. I always store a jar full of this to accompany any Indian curry or starter.

The process of making this pickled onion is very simple. You need only few ingredients, onion, salt, sugar, water and vinegar and you are ready for your pickled onion. There are many recipes that calls for just mixing the ingredients together to make the pickle(you can find that recipe in one of my favorite blog But to eliminate the strong flavor of onion and vinegar I like to cook it for a little time. You can serve these pickled onion with various dishes. Other than tandoori chicken or kebabs I also enjoy them with sandwiches and burgers.

Things needed to make pickled onion:

(recipe adapted from
  • Small onions: 25-30
  • Salt: 2 tsp
  • Sugar: 1 tbsp
  • Water: 3/4 cup
  • Vinegar: 1/2 cup

Steps of making pickled onion:

1. Peel the small onion. In case you don't get the small onions you can use slices of large red onions. To peel the onions cut both the ends and peel the dry layers.

2. Wash the onions and pat dry with a kitchen towel. Make sure the onions are properly dried.

3. Sprinkle salt on the onions and rub salt on the onion to coat them well.

4. In a saucepan, take water, sugar, boil the water. As the water rolls to boil switch off heat and add vinegar. I used white vinegar. Mix well. Add the onion to the water-vinegar mix, cover and let it come down to room temperature. Some like to add green chilies, peppercorns, bay leaves, julienned ginger to this. But I prefer it to be just like in the restaurants, only onions.

5. Take a clean sterilized glass jar. Transfer the onions to the jar. Pour the vinegar mix to cover all the onions. Close the jar and store in refrigerator. Serve after 24 hrs. This will keep good for a month in the refrigerator. If you are using sliced large red onion, the procedure will be same. Wash and pat dry before you slice the large onion, then follow the same procedure as this.

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Sirkewale Peyaz / Pickled Onion 

Small onions: 25-30
Salt: 2 teaspoon
Sugar: 1 tablespoon
Water: 3/4 cup
White vinegar: 1/2 cup

1.Peel onions. Wash and pat dry.
2. Rub salt to the onions.
3. Mix sugar and water in a saucepan, let boil, as the water rolls to boil switch off heat. Add vinegar. Add onions. Cover and bring to room temperature. Transfer to a clean sterilized jar, cover and store in refrigerator.
4. Serve after 24 hrs.

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  1. Wow Chitrangada ,love the way u have captured the light coming thru the bottle.Love pickled onion too...

  2. amazing clicks.... nvr heard of this... looks lovely...

    Event: Dish Name Starts with U

  3. What gorgeous photos, Chitrangada! Pickled onions always remind me of roadside dhabas in India.
    Thanks for stopping by my blog - it was lovely to find your words there :) xx

  4. wonderful clicks that treat our the fab way of pickling them for future use

  5. looks nice , I made instant pickle just to eat diner time, add vinegar in chopped onion and leave it for 5 minutes and done.

    1. Yeah I do that with lime juice, but this is to replicate the restaurant like feel.

  6. wow simply loving your gorgeous clicks and my granny used to be a die hard fan of this pink color and she has tons of sarees in this shade ;) love each and every capture. Must give this a try sometime

    1. Priya, what a coincidence this shade is one of my favorite too. Thanks for your sweet words.

  7. Looks great, thanks for sharing.

  8. Wowww... your photography is awesome.. Wonderful job dear :)

  9. Love the bright pink looking pearls.. Such a simple & flavorful dish !

  10. This is my Dad's favourite....thanx for the recipe chitrangada...lovely pics!!!

  11. Gorgeous photography and a great recipe

  12. I tried this last week, when i had a tandoori evening , and it was loved by everyone. Husband was so happy as he has been telling me to make this for that last 20 years as he always have it when we go to Delhi Durbar in Mumbai. Planning to write down the recipe in my notebook so i won't loose the recipe for next time. Thankyou for the recipe.

  13. Can we use carrots instead od onions

  14. That's an excellent tip Chitrangada! To cook it down! I have made this at home but wasn't too happy with it! Will try this!