Atchara is sweet, tart (and sometimes spicy) all at once--the perfect accompaniment to grilled and/fried meats. This is my father's recipe.
In a medium sauce pan, add the distilled vinegar and bring to a boil and allow to boil for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the sugar and two teaspoons pickling salt until both are dissolved. Allow this mixture to cool to room temperature.
While the pickling brine cools, prepare the papaya. In a large bowl, toss the shredded papaya with 1/4 cup of pickling salt, cover and refrigerate for about two to three hours. After this time, transfer the papaya to a colander and rinse thoroughly with cold water. (This step coaxes out the excess liquid in the papaya and the salt needs to be rinsed out.)
Using a cheesecloth or kitchen towel, squeeze out as much of the excess liquid from the papaya as you can. It's more effective to do this in batches so for this recipe you can divide the papaya in four batches. Place the papaya in a large bowl once finished with this step and fluff with a fork to allow for more even distribution with the rest of the ingredients.
To the drained papaya add the following: carrots, bell pepper, onion, ginger, garlic, raisins and peppercorns. Toss to combine.
Transfer the papaya mixture into mason jars and pour in the brine. The brine should cover the mixture entirely. Cover with a lid and refrigarate for a minimum of five days before using the atchara.
Ingredients: My father recommends using distilled white vinegar, pickling salt and granulated sugar for this recipe instead of other varieties for best results.
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