Prawn Balchao - Sweet, Salty, Sour and Spicy Goan Pickle

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Nov. 21, 2023

Made with Red Chillies, Garlic, Ginger, Prawn or Shrimp Vinegar - this sweet, salty, sour and spicy Goan Prawn Balchao will have you drooling. This recipe comes from my Mom's cookbooks, but I've adapted it and made sure to include better process instructions and measurements.


15 Kashmiri Chillies (35 gms)
3/4 cup Goa Vinegar, Malt or Red Wine Vinegar
1 tsp Cumin seeds
1/2 tsp black Peppercorns
1.5 cups Oil
300 gms Prawn or Shrimp
1/2 tsp Turmeric
500 gms finely minced Onion (3 medium Onions)
35 gms each of finely chopped Ginger and Garlic (10 cloves and a 2 inch piece of Ginger)
Extra tbsp Vinegar
Salt and sugar to taste



1.Stem and deseed the Kashmiri Chillies and allow them to soak in the Vinegar for an hour.


2.Grind the Chillies with the Vinegar, Cumin seeds and Peppercorns till it’s a smooth paste.

3.Heat 1 or 2 tbsps of the Oil and add the Prawn or Shrimp with the Turmeric.

4.Once the Prawn or Shrimp is cooked remove and keep aside.

5.Add most of the Oil and add the Onion and allow it to get a nice light golden brown.

6.Add the finely chopped Ginger & Garlic and saute for another 5 mins.

7.Add all of the red masala paste and add a tbsp of Vinegar if needed to free all the masala paste.

8.Add the cooked Prawn or Shrimp.

9.Add the rest of the Oil and Salt & Sugar to taste.


10.Bottle and store in a cool place for about a week before consuming.

Recipe Summary

Difficulty Level: Easy
Cook Time: 15 Minutes
Ready In: 15 Minutes