One condiment that you’ll commonly see in Malaysia is pickled green chillies. They’re sour and only slightly spicy (I like to eat them on their own!). You’ll find them on many restaurant tables, or served with dishes such as wantan mee and chee cheong fun. My mum used to make jars of these when we were growing up. They’re actually similar to the pickled jalapenos that you can find in North America, used in Mexican food, or as a topping for pizza or hot dogs.
To be honest, I’m not sure what kind of green chillies are used in Malaysia, but I used green jalapeno peppers, which are easily found here. You can also use green serrano chillies (although they’re hotter than jalapenos) but not bird’s eye chillies.
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PICKLED GREEN CHILLIES (Makes about 2 500-ml jars)
1 lb. (454g) green chillies (jalapeno or serrano)
3 cups rice vinegar (or white vinegar)
2 teaspoons sugar
3 teaspoons salt
1.5 litres water
1. Slice chillies and place in a colander. Gently toss the chillies and shake the colander to get rid of as many seeds as possible.
2. In a bowl, mix together vinegar, sugar and salt. Set aside.
3. Boil water in a large pot, blanch chillies for about 20 seconds. Drain well and transfer to a large bowl.
4. Pour the vinegar mixture over the chillies and mix well.
5. Transfer chillies to sterilized glass jars, and store in the refrigerator. They will be ready to eat the next day.