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Nellikkai (Indian Gooseberry) Thokku

Nellikai_Gooseberry_Thokku_1 Nellikkai plays an important role in Ayurvedic medicine. In north India, it is called as ‘Amla’. In Indian cuisines, it is used for sweet sour pickle, chutney,  raitha/pachadi etc. In south India some people like to keep this tree at home. Like basil (tulsi) this also considered sacred. Even though it tastes sour after eating one, if you drink water that tastes sweet. Over all it revitalizes our system.

Serves: 4

Cooking time: 15 minutes


  • Nellikkai (gooseberry) –10 no
  • Turmeric powder – ¼ tea spoon
  • Salt – as per taste
  • Sugar – ½ tea spoon (optional)
  • Sesame oil/any oil – 2 tea spoon
  • Roast and dry powder
    • Red chilli – 8 to 10 no
    • Fenugreek – ½ tea spoon
    • Mustard – ½ tea spoon
    • Cumin seeds – ½ tea spoon
    • Asafetida powder – 2 pinch
  • For seasoning
    • Mustard – ½ tea spoon
    • Urad dal (split black gram) – ½ tea spoon
    • Curry leaves – few

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Step 1

  • Wash and grate Nellikkai; remove the seed (Shortcut Wink – you can take the fleshy part and put it in a mixer and just run the mixer slightly. Grated Nellikkai will be ready quick enough)
  • Dry roast and powder the items given.


Step 2

  • Heat a pan, add oil, do the seasoning; add turmeric powder, then grated Nellikkai and salt; mix, close it with lid and cook for 2 minutes.
  • Add dry powder, sugar and mix well; cook for 2 more minutes and remove.

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  • Nellikkai Thokku is ready. This goes well with curd rice and as a substitute for pickle.

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  • Grating and cooking Nellikkai is one of the best ways as it reduces cooking time drastically.
  • After grating, the Nellikkai seeds will be having tiny Nellikkai particles; put these seeds in a cup of water; after one hour filter and drink; the water will be sweet and delicious and also enriched with vitamins.

{ 5 comments… add one }

  • Hemalatha October 20, 2009, 12:55 pm

    Have been using thokku. But had no info about how to prepare it. Thanks for sharing this info . As the nellikayi season has started, will definitely try this.

  • silambarasan.c February 11, 2010, 11:19 pm

    i loved nellika its really good to health, so dont miss it…its me simbu.c

  • Nivi September 2, 2011, 1:11 am

    Loved it, have been hunting for a good recipe for long…

  • Archana January 23, 2013, 5:51 pm

    I made nellikai thokku today by referring to your post. It came out really well. Thank you.

  • Aruna March 7, 2014, 12:59 pm

    Tried Nellika thokku with some doubts but the results were outstanding. My 13 yr old polished off the entire batch i made today. Thank you for such a wonderful recipe

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