Posted on March 23, 2022 at 3:00 PM by Madhu Gadia
Tamarind chutney is a quintessential condiment for chaat. It is used extensively in North India as a dip for appetizers and snacks. Tamarind has a unique sweet-sour taste. I prefer to use dry tamarind for this chutney, available in a block. It takes time to rehydrate tamarind extract the juices, but it's well worth the time. I always cook the chutney until smooth and glossy. Once cooked, it keeps for a long time — about 2-3 months in the refrigerator and longer when frozen.
3 1/2 oz dry tamarind, seeded & packaged
3 cups water
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Remove any seeds from the tamarind block. Combine tamarind and 2 cups of water in a medium pan, bring to a boil and cook for 2–3 minutes. Remove from the heat. Let soak for 1/2–1 hour until soaked through.
Grind the soaked tamarind in a blender, just a few whirls. Strain the pulp in the strainer (medium holes). Pour the remaining water (1 cup) over the pulp gradually, stirring with a spoon or fingers to help strain the tamarind paste.
Return the tamarind paste to the pan. Add the salt, brown sugar, and cayenne pepper. Stir until the sugar is dissolved. Heat on medium heat, stirring occasionally. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15–20 minutes. The chutney will thicken as it cools.
Serve at room temperature or refrigerate in an air-tight container.
Makes about 2 1/4 cups
Serving size: 1 teaspoon
Reprinted from: New Indian Home Cooking by Madhu Gadia, MS, RD