In Memory Of Karen Nicole Smith, 1972 - 2016

Appetizing Onion Choka.

While you will see similarities with this Onion Choka and Classic Pepper Choka (basically roasted hot peppers made into a SPICY condiment), with the simplicity (and the perfect blend of flavor and texture) of this version, it could easily be your new favorite side to curry dishes. TIP! Use as much thinly sliced onion as YOU desire.

You’ll Need…

6 hot peppers
6 – 8 cloves garlic
1 Large Red Onion
3/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup olive oil

Important! This is meant to be SPICY! Wash your hands and/or wear gloves when handling such hot peppers. Please go through the entire list of ingredients to make sure they meet with your specific gluten free dietary requirements.

To help control the heat level and for a unique flavor (you wont get with mature ripe peppers), I like using the peppers which are green and about 90 % mature. During the summer months I simply grill them until charred on my outdoor grill. However (being careful) you can roast them until charred on your gas stovetop. Be mindful that if using metal tongs, it can heat up all the way to your hands after a while.

Once the peppers are cooled (enough to handle), place them (stems removed) along with the garlic and salt into your mortar and smash it with the pestle until it’s broken down. You DO NOT want a paste, but something more chunky.

May I suggest you be very careful when smashing it, as the liquid and pieces of pepper can go flying and could end up making contact with your eyes. Yes, you may use a food processor if you wish – but PULSE! I usually use one hand to hold the pestle and the other to cover or shield whatever I’m crushing (so it remains in the mortar).

THINLY slice the onions (use as much as you like as we want the onions to be the star of the recipe) and place it directly over the now crushed roasted peppers and garlic. A typical pepper choka will not have as much onion as the focus in that recipe will be the peppers.

We’re almost done. Heat the oil in frying pan until you see whispers of smoke, then (be careful) pour it directly over the raw onions. This will take the raw edge off the onions and add a wonderful flavor to the completed onion choka. This step is called “Chunkay”.

Give it a proper stir and enjoy! The heat from the peppers (and smoky flavor from charring), flavors of the garlic and onion, and the slight crunch from the raw onions.. definitely one of my fav condiments to enjoy with curry dishes. Store in a clean glass container in the fridge for up to a week.

Besides the onions being the key to this choka, you’ll also love the oil drizzled over whatever you’re eating. As I mentioned above about adding as much onion as you want, the same goes for the heated oil. It will be one of the best pepper oils you’ve ever had.

Drop me your comments below, tag me on Instagram and don’t forget you can now get my cookbook – The Vibrant Caribbean Pot, 100 Traditional And Fusion Recipes @

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1 Comment

  1. Cindy
    December 9, 2021 / 4:14 pm

    Dear Chris, does this onion choka taste god with curry goat? Thanks for your reply, Cindy

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