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In India, we believe that any food can be medicine or poison depending on how it’s prepared, how it’s eaten and the quantity it’s eaten in. This belief is one of the foundation pillar of Ayurveda, the traditional Indian system of medicine.

Thus taking care of stomach and stomach issues is key to ensuring good health. Every Indian home will have a host of natural remedies to take care of all sorts of stomach issues.

Not only is this recipe for making sweet lemon pickle very good for stomach health, it also is very delicious! My mom makes a batch of this sweet lemon pickle every winter so that we always have a jar of this pickle in our house for any stomach emergencies.

You can either eat it raw or eat it with khicdi, made from rice and yellow lentils, another dish for stomach upsets.

However,  the only drawback is that this pickle takes one full year before it’s ready to be eaten. And this is also the reason that this pickle is black in colour.

Here’s to starting the new year on a healthy note!

Happy New Year!

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Course Accompaniment
Cuisine Indian, Punjabi
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 50 pieces
Calories/Serving 28.98kcal


  • 1 kg lemons nimbu in Punjabi
  • 250 gram sugar
  • 100 gram salt
  • 1 tbsp red chilli powder
  • 25 gram ajwain
  • 5 gram cloves roughly ground
  • 5-6 black cardamom discard the shell, roughly ground the seeds
  • 10 gram cumin seeds roasted and roughly ground
  • 10 gram black pepper roughly ground


  • Please make sure that all the bowls, spoons, jars and knives that you use during the preparation of the pickle are completely dry before you use them. Even a hint of water will completely spoil the pickle.
  • Wash the lemons and dry them completely.
  • Cut the lemons into three different ways: cut 1/3rd of the lemons into four pieces, cut 1/3rd of the lemons into four pieces but still attached at the top and cut the remaining lemons into halves.
  • Mix together the spices, salt and oil.
  • Add the oil and spices mix to the lemons and make sure to mix it well so that lemon pieces are coated with oil and spice mix.
  • Store the pickle in a glass jar. (Please only use the glass or the ceramic jar. Please do not store the pickle in metal or plastic containers as it will spoil).
  • Set the pickle in a dry, cool place.
  • It takes a full year for the pickle to be ready
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