Sunday, February 5, 2017

Thai Pickled Chillies

Chilli bushes grow very well in my corner of the tropical world, and indeed throughout most of coastal Queensland. I couldn't imagine life without at least one chilli bush in my herb patch. I had about 8 beautifully red, homegrown chillies set aside in my refrigerator waiting until I had enough to make some chilli jam. And then I saw this recipe as I was pouring over Nigella Lawson's latest recipe book whilst enjoying my early morning cup of tea. One of life's great pleasures. So out with the chilli jam for now and in with this pickle. 

I never pickled at all much before I retired, and now I am at risk of becoming the Pickling Queen. Although my Mum was always pickling something or making chutneys and jams. Condiments are such an asset in the kitchen and rather than waste anything in season, I often pickle it.  I have a couple of wonderful friends who bring me their empty jam and pickle bottles, which are very much appreciated, and of course I reciprocate with a couple of full ones back to them. There can be a lot of comfort to be found in the ritual of cooking a family or traditional dish such as Roast chicken or some fish, or indeed a simple traybake. However, just add a few new and exciting condiments to the table which can stand confidently on their own, but serve to enhance the main dish, and the meal rises to new heights.

So now these pickled chillies which are so quick and easy, can bask in their glory alongside some other side dishes. I made them early this morning before I even ate breakfast.


3/4 cup (75g) fresh red chillies ( not the very hot Bird's Eye Chilli variety) About 8 chillies required.
1 1/2 cups (325 ml) rice wine vinegar
2 small or resealable jars with lids

Thinly slice the chillies crosswise and put them into your preserving jars and pour the rice wine vinegar over them. Some of the seeds will just fall out of the chillies as you are slicing them, and I

My chilli bush

throw them over my sunny herb and vegetable patches working on the principle that about 30% of them should self seed. I don't even bother digging the seeds in, they are so easy to grow. That way nothing is wasted and you will continue to have chilli bushes coming up in your garden, which I love, as they are also very decorative, and quite pest resistant.

 I really like the idea of using two smaller jars so that the chillies are well covered and also one jar is kept hygienically sealed whilst the other one is used instead of being dipped into all the time until the contents are completely finished.

Leave in the refrigerator for 48 hours before opening them, and then they will keep in a sealed bottle for about a month.

Chillies have so many health benefits, including relief for sinus sufferers, higher levels of Vitamin C than oranges, and many more, that they should be offered with every meal, not just Thai cuisine.

Makes approx. 500ml.

Thanks for dropping by.

Warm wishes

Pauline xx

I originally saw this recipe in Nigella Lawson's "Simply Nigella" and just had to make it.


  1. I will be making this Pauline. Thanks. You should put the recipe on the forum. I am sure it will be very popular.

  2. Chel, Can you send me instructions on the best way to add it to the Forum please? many thanks, Pauline

  3. Pauline, if you go to the forum check up the top where it says 'My Messages' as I left a message there for you the other day. I will do another one with the instructions to add your recipe.

  4. Hi Pauline, love your blog! I would just like to ask how you use the pickled chillies - as an ingredient in Asian cooking or with cheese & crackers? Also, do you need to leave it to cure for any length of time or can it be used straight away? ... with thanks Kim

    1. Hi Kim, Nice to hear from you. The chillis need to pickle in the bottle for 48 hours before opening and then be used within a month. I used some of them last night in an Asian stir fry and they worked really well. I think the pickling takes some of the heat out of the chilli. What a good idea though to have just a couple of slices with cheese and crackers, or with my zucchini pickle and cheese would be nice as well.Thanks, Pauline


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