We produce small-batch achaar (pronounced uh-char), AKA 'Indian pickle', a relish made from vegetables & fruits, chilies, spices and oil - think of it as India’s equivalent to Sriracha, harissa or kimchi. Add a little bit to whatever you’re eating to give it a spicy, sour, sweet and savory kick! Traditionally, it's eaten with rice, dal, curry or yogurt, but it goes great on sandwiches, with grilled meats, on eggs, mixed into soups or noodles, with cheese & crackers, etc. and you can also cook with it - add it to a big pot of lentils or shakshuka.
Brooklyn Delhi condiments are handmade by Crown Heights couple, Chitra Agrawal and Ben Garthus using fresh ingredients, seasonal and local when available & no artificial preservatives. Chitra is the creator of The ABCD's of Cooking, specializing in Indian vegetarian cooking using local ingredients. Since 2009, she has been writing about, teaching and making Indian recipes for local markets and special pop-up dinner events in Brooklyn. She has been featured in The New York Times, Food & Wine, The Huffington Post, The Hindustan Times and Heritage Radio, among others for her cooking and is the author of Vibrant India: Fresh Vegetarian Recipes from Bangalore to Brooklyn (Penguin Random House, March 2017).
Chitra travels to India each year to visit family and gain inspiration for her recipes. Much of what her suitcase is filled with going back home is (you guessed it!) achaar in oh so many varieties - green mango, gooseberry, red chili, carrot, etc. After getting her fiancé Ben Garthus hooked on the stuff (and running out of achaar before her next trip), they realized that the only achaars available for sale in the US were salt-heavy, cooked with unhealthy oils & preservatives and lacked that homemade flavor.
That’s why Chitra started making the relish from ingredients she found around her in Brooklyn like tomatoes, rhubarb, garlic and American gooseberries. Usually achaar is really spicy and really salty, which means you don’t eat a lot of it, but the Brooklyn Delhi recipe highlights the flavor of the vegetables and fruits and aromatic spices (that are also very healthy!), along with the chilies so it’s not all about burning your tongue off and raising your blood pressure:) After selling out her achaars at pop-up events and cooking classes, Chitra and Ben decided to package them for everyone to enjoy.
We make our achaar in Brooklyn, NY & we like it best...on everything!
photo credit: D. Robert Wolcheck