a year ago

Spice up your boring food with Balachaw

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Balachaw is a traditional, mouth-watering food of Chattogram and Cox’s Bazar which is made by dried shrimp, onion, garlic, and some other ingredients.

There is another prawn-pickle recipe originated from India with an almost identical name - Balchão. It has been described as ‘a fiery dish’ from Goa which is almost like a pickle. It is a spicy seafood or meat dish in Goan cuisine.

Balachaung, on the other hand, is a type of pickle of Burmese origin, made from dried shrimp, and is relished with steamed rice. Although few sources mark Burma as the authentic origin of Balachaw, its popularity is now ubiquitous in Bangladesh.

As the homemade food businesses grew in a faster way in recent time with the help of social media, Balachaw became more popular all-over the country. Its varied features make it a great addition to the kitchen and dining room.

Balachaw has many more uses than just having a pickle with steamed rice or khichuri. Here are some simple Balachaw recipes to prepare it at home and enhance the taste of food.

Tomato-Balachaw Chutney:


  • 4 medium size Tomato (paste)
  • Garlic (1 whole if big in size)।
  • 5 or 6 Green chillies (you can also use one or half of a Naga if you love it spicy)
  • Chopped onion 1 cup
  • Balachaw (crumbled in Grainger) 3 tbsp
  • Turmeric, red chilli, coriander-cumin powder (each 1/2 tsp)
  • Mustard oil and salt as per needed.


  1. Heat up 3 tbsp mustard oil in a pan with medium flame, lightly sauté garlic and chilli in that oil.
  2. Blend well the sautéed garlic and chilli with the oil in a mixer, again leave it on heat.
  3. Leave chopped onion on the oil and stir frequently.
  4. Add tomato paste to it when the onion is light brown, continue stirring on medium flame.
  5. Add all the powder spices with half and quarter tsp salt. Keep stirring until the water evaporates and spreads a nice aroma of spices.
  6. Add crumbled Balachaw, stir well and keep it in low heat covering the pan.

Serve with steamed rice with crispy Balachaw on the top.

Mixed Vegetable Rosha:


  • Vegetables (Gourd leaf, Pumpkin, Brinjal, Potato, tomato each 1 cup cut into cubes)
  • Garlic (one medium, finely chopped)
  • Dried chilli, Bay leaves
  • Red chilli powder 1 tsp
  • Turmeric powder 1/2 tsp
  • Crumbled Balachaw 3 tbsp
  • Salt 1.5 tsp
  • Mustered oil 3 tbsp.


  1. Take all the vegetables in a bowl, add chilli-turmeric and salt and leave for 1 hour.
  2. Heat oil over medium heat and stir in 5-6 whole dried chillies, 3 to 4 bay leaves and 2-3 teaspoons of crushed garlic.
  3. Put all the vegetables in the pan and cover it, turning down the heat.
  4. When the vegetables leave more water, stir them with crushed Balachaw and cover them again.
  5. When the vegetables are cooked, add 4-5 green chilies with a little water and put the lid back.
  6. Turn off the heat. Ready to serve with steamed rice.


Balachaw-Aloo Chaat:


  • Potatoes cut in thin pieces
  • Chopped onion
  • Green chillies
  • Fresh coriander leaves
  • Lemon juice (half of a lime)
  • Chaat masala
  • Roasted coriander-cumin powder
  • Roasted chilli flex
  • Salt
  • Mustard oil
  • Balachaw


  1. Bake the potatoes garnishing with a little oil and salt. Pan fried potatoes are also preferable but boil them before to make sure it's well cooked.
  2. Take the baked/sautéed potatoes in a bowl, add chaat masala, chopped onion-green chillies-coriander leaves, roasted coriander-cumin powder and chilli flex, lime juice and mix them together properly.
  3. Add Balachaw as a topping on the serving dish just before serving, to make the crispiness more enjoyable.

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