Mesu

Fermented bamboo shoots

Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Easy

  • Makes

    1 x 1 litre

    jar

Appears in

Lands of the Curry Leaf

Lands of the Curry Leaf

By Peter Kuruvita

Published 2018

  • About

The use of mesu as a pickle and as the base of curries is a long tradition in the hills of Darjeeling and the state of Sikkim in north-east India. Made with fermented bamboo shoots, this very popular pickle has a tangy and sour taste that is hard to forget.

Preparation 20 minutes + 6 hours fermenting

Ingredients

  • 250 g (9 oz) blanched or tinned bamboo shoots
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 3 teaspoons chilli powder
  • 1 teaspoon brown mustard seeds, dry-roasted
  • 1 teaspoon mustard oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Method

Place all the ingredients in a bowl and mix until well combined.

Spoon into a sterilised jar. Cover the opening with a piece of muslin (cheesecloth), then secure the lid.

Store in a cool dark place for at least 6 hours, until pickled to your liking; the fermented bamboo shoots will keep for up to 4 weeks. During this time, the flavour will keep getting stronger, and the shoots more tender.