Ready to learn about our culinary secret weapon? It’s the spice that makes our stews complex and tangy. What adds dimension and intrigue to our desserts and smoothies. We’re talking about amchur powder.
Amchur powder is one of the spices we reach for most frequently, but don’t be worried if you’ve never even heard of this versatile little powder. Many people haven’t if they aren’t used to cooking Indian cuisine.
For us, amchur powder is a staple - and we want you to be just as confident using it as we are.
Amchur powder is a fine, beige or light brown powder made from unripe dried green mangoes. ‘Am’ is the Hindi word for mango, and ‘chur’ means ‘powder’ so amchur’s meaning is quite literally ‘mango powder.’
This powder has been a staple in Indian cuisine for thousands of years. It originated in Northern India where mango trees are evergreen and abundant. To make amchur, we must harvest mangos while they are still unripe, peel them and cut them into strips, dry them in the sun and crush them into powder.
Amchur powder has a distinctive sweet and sour aroma with hints of honey and citrus. It is very tart and strong, and is what our families reach for when they want to add some tang to a dish.
If you want to add acidity to a dish, without adding extra moisture, then amchur is the perfect choice. Amchur powder can be used in lue of lime juice, tamarind or vinegar - or in addition to add extra depth to your meal.
A little goes a long way with this powerful spice, so try starting with a half-teaspoon and going from there. In general, we like to say that 1 teaspoon of amchur powder is equivalent to 3 teaspoons of lemon or lime juice.
Our family uses amchur powder in pakora batter, in samosa fillings, and as a rub for grilled meat or seafood skewers. We also love it in soups, stewed lentils and chutneys. You can even use amchur powder to tenderize meat in a marinade because of its high acid content.
Traditionally, amchur is most often found in vegetarian Indian dishes, but you can use it for just about anything. Try adding it to a hearty chili, or sprinkling it on top of your morning yogurt. Indeed, amchur is a truly versatile seasoning.
Amchur powder does more than just add flavour and colour to your meals. Mangoes are the ‘king of fruits’ in India for a reason. They are chalk-full of vitamins and minerals, which can give your body all sorts of added benefits.
Many expecting mothers in India swear by amchur powder. We use it to combat morning sickness and nausea, as well as help with constipation and indigestion. The high potassium levels in mango may even help prevent gestational diabetes. Because of this, amchur powder is an everyday staple in our diet during pregnancy.
Mangoes contain more Vitamin A than any other fruit. This vitamin may help with skin and hair health, and is even thought to improve your vision and help protect against cataracts. We even use amchur powder as a spot treatment to help get rid of acne!
This powerful powder is also high in Vitamin C, Vitamin E, iron and antioxidants. If you are suffering from anemia or immune deficiency, it might be worth adding a little amchur to your diet.
All our spices at Lord & Lion are meticulously crafted and lovingly made so you can enjoy the very best flavours in your food. We want you to be able to enjoy your amchur powder just as much as we do, so we’ve got a couple tips for you.
Keep your amchur powder in a cool, dry area so that it stays fresh for longer. We make sure it’s kept in an air-tight container and that the lid is screwed on tightly. If not, the amchur powder can get lumpy and change consistency and flavour. It can also be affected by the flavour of other strong spices nearby like whole cloves or cinnamon, so make sure you have a good seal on your spices.
If you’re looking to add some refreshing tang to your drink on a hot day, or impress your relatives with a new flavour profile, try our very own ground amchur powder in our Indian Spice Box. This box makes a great addition to any kitchen, and a wonderful gift for anyone who wants to elevate their cooking.