Dried mango powder, or amchur, is a spice made by grinding dried mangoes. It is a beige powder with a honey-like fragrance and a sour fruity flavour.
It is made by peeling then slicing unripe green mangoes into thin strips. These strips are dried in the sun for about a week, then ground into a fine powder.
The powder preserves the acidic, tart and spicy flavour of unripe mangoes. It is used to add a fruit flavour without adding moisture or as a souring agent. It gives a distinctive acidic taste to the dish. It also has tenderising qualities, like lime juice.
Amchur is a key ingredient in our chaat masala and is well suited to potato dishes.
When cooking with amchur take note that a little goes a long way. Too much amchur will make the dish unpleasantly sour or even inedible. We advise you to follow the recipe, at least for the first time.
Amchur is available from Indian grocers and specialist spice merchants. You want a powder that has a fibrous texture and is a light beige colour. This is another spice you should buy in small quantities, as you will not use much of it. It will keep reasonably well in an air-tight container in a cool and dry place, but it will lose pungency after a while.