Koro sambar (Gujarati pickle masala)

Koro sambar or methia no masalo is a traditional Gujarati pickle masala used in making pickle as well as to sprinkle on khakhra, thepla and other delicacies.

Share on pinterest
Pinterest
Share on facebook
Share
Share on email
Email

Koro sambar, also known as methia no masalo is a spicy blend of mustard and fenugreek seeds mixed with the red chili powder. It is a traditional pickle that you will find it most Gujarati households. Extremely versatile, it is used as is, be it sprinkled on khakhra or dhokla or many other Gujarati delicacies. And come summer, this spice blend is further used in making the lip smacking Methia keri nu athanu or bharela gunda and many other traditional Gujarati pickles. One of my popular recipe, satpadi rotli and bharela marcha uses this koro sambar to transform something simple into a lip smacking recipe.

Bharela gunda (Stuffed gumberry Gujarati pickle)
Bharela gunda (Stuffed gumberry Gujarati pickle)

The recipe is actually quite easy with few ingredients. But just like any other pickle, it is more about the small details than the actual recipe. Let us understand the why and how of these small details.

  1. To increase the shelf life of this pickle, ensure that your hands, the spoon, the pan – basically all that comes in contact with the pickle is completely dry. Water is not this pickle’s best friend – it may cause fungus to form on the layer of the pickle and thereby spoiling the entire batch.
  2. Dry roast fenugreek seeds and mustard seeds separately. Each seed has a different heating point and it is best to roast them separately. Dry roasting will ensure two things: it will release the essential oils in the seeds thereby making them more flavourful and also help in grinding them in the powder.
  3. The yellow mustard works the best in this pickle. The yellow mustard seeds are the mildest in flavour whereas the black mustard is at the other spectrum, being quite pungent. Black and brown mustard seeds besides changing the flavour profile of the pickle can also make the end product look darker and not the bright red we all love in a pickle.
  4. The fenugreek seeds can burn easily and in turn become bitter to taste. Therefore, while dry roasting the fenugreek seeds, it is best to watch it carefully and remove from the pan once they smell toasty. Care needs to be taken even while grinding the fenugreek seeds. A coarse powder is best suited to this pickle, a fine powder consistency can make the pickle spice blend slimy.
  5. Most often, kashmiri red chili powder is used in this pickle for its colour as well as flavour. Since koro sambar is used as an accompaniment with thepla, dhokla etc, the spice level is not very hot. Crushed yellow mustard seeds and fenugreek seeds along with kashmiri red chili powder make koro sambar adequately spicy.
  6. Lastly, the oil. The ‘hot’ oil is poured over the spice to release its aroma and flavours. However, it can go quickly wrong here if super-hot oil is poured over the powdered spice. The red chili can burn quickly changing its bright red colour and also give a burnt after taste. On a thermometer, it should read 130-140 C before you pour it over the oil. Alternatively, you could also test by pouring a spoon of oil over a small amount of the powdered mix. If it sizzles with a wonderful aroma, it is at a right temperature. If it bubbles furiously, it is too hot and needs to cool down a bit before you pour it over the spice mix. And at the other end, if ‘cold’ oil is poured over the spice mix, it will not toast the powders well and therefore needs to brought to the heat again.
  7. And of course, storing of the koro sambar. Use a glass container with a glass lid or a plastic lid. Metal lids tend to rust and it can leak into the pickle. So, the traditional ceramic pickle jar or a more modern mason jar works well here. Wash and dry a container and its lid a day before and put it out in the sun to air dry completely. Or wash and dry with a clean towel and then use your hair dryer to completely dry out the container and the lid from inside. A neat trick isn’t it? All credits to my elder sister who is such an expert at all this.

    Koro sambar / methia masalo (Gujarati pickle masala)
    Koro sambar / methia masalo (Gujarati pickle masala)

If you enjoyed this recipe, you may want to have a look at some of these as well:

  1. Bharela marcha (stuffed chili peppers)
  2. Dry chutney for vada pav in 5 minutes 
  3. Pumpkin seed pesto
  4. Masala tea caramel
  5. Hung curd dip with garlic oil (vagharelu dahi)

Share on pinterest
Pinterest
Share on facebook
Share
Share on email
Email

Let me know how this recipe turned out for you by writing to me in the comments below. And if you take a picture, please tag me on my instagram handle @acookwithin to share your creation😊 It would make my day!

Rate this recipe

Average rating 5 / 5. Vote count: 3

No votes so far! Be the first to rate this recipe.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

2 thoughts on “Koro sambar (Gujarati pickle masala)”

SUBSCRIBE AND GET AN ALERT VIA EMAIL FOR ALL NEW RECIPES