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Lime Pickle Recipe

Course: Side Dish
Total Time: A Day Or More
Skill Level: Easy
Cost: Inexpensive
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Lime Pickle

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These pungently spiced preserved limes will enhance curries or pilafs, are wonderful with fish or chicken, and are easy to make.

Yield: 2 qts (2 liters)


  • 2½ cups olive oil
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tbsp black peppercorns
  • 1 tbsp coriander seeds
  • 1 tbsp crushed hot red pepper
  • 10 limes, washed and cut into quarters
  • 3 tbsp fine sea salt

  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • A few whole cloves
  • 2 bay leaves

Special equipment:

  • Two 1 qt (1 liter) glass canning jars


1. Heat the oil in a saucepan until very hot but not smoking. Remove from the heat and set aside to let cool completely.

2. Coarsely crush the cumin seeds, peppercorns, and coriander seeds with a mortar and pestle. Mix in the hot pepper.

3. Put the limes in a shallow bowl and sprinkle with the ground spices. Add the salt, garlic, ginger, cloves, and bay leaves and stir well. Let stand for 30 minutes.

4. Have ready two hot, sterilized, 1qt (1 liter) glass canning jars with lids. Divide the limes among the jars and add cooled oil to cover. Cover each jar with cheesecloth. Place in a sunny place (or near a warm stove); let stand for 6 days, stirring each day.

5. Cover each jar with its lid. Store in a cool, dark place for at least 4 weeks to develop the flavors and soften the rinds. The pickle can be stored up to 6 months, although the color may change. Refrigerate after opening.


You can make similar pickles using lemons or oranges instead of limes.


The pickle must be made at least 4 weeks before serving.

© 2008 Dorling Kindersley

Nutrients per serving (% daily value)

Nutritional information is based on 20 servings.

49kcal (2%)
11mg (1%)
10mg (16%)
1mcg RAE (0%)
0mg (0%)
175mg (7%)
1g (3%)
5g (7%)
0mg (1%)

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