This Tamarind Dipping Sauce is delicious enough to eat on it's own and is my favorite chutney for many of my recipes! This original recipe led to the creation of my sugar free imli tamarind chutney recipe which is often my go to as this one has loads of sugar. However, for Ramadan I always make a big batch of this original version.
The recipe is simple but a bit time consuming as the tamarind has to soak for a while to get the pulp ready for the sauce. I usually make a large batch and freeze it in portions to counter this. The sauce is easy to freeze and I defrost it as and when I need to use it.
Soak The Pulp
Most people simply soak their tamarind in hot water but I find that boiling it yields more of the pulp so it's my preferred method. Once the water reaches boiling point, the stove is shut off. The hot water softens the pulp and loosens it as the mixture reaches room temperature. Every fifteen minutes or so I use a spoon to break the block of tamarind apart to help the process.
Prepare The Pulp
The picture below illustrates what the mixture will look like after the tamarind is done soaking. As you can see, there are pits and fibre that have to be removed using a fine mesh strainer. I place small portions at a time in the strainer and use a spoon to work it through the strainer. A little bit of water can be used if necessary to help with the straining.
Cook The Sauce
After the pulp is strained, it needs to be cooked with a little sugar and chaat masala. Chaat Masala can be purchased at any South Asian grocery store or ordered from Amazon. It's a unique blend of spices often used in Pakistani and Indian savory snacks.
The sugar is what makes the sauce dark and thick as it caramelizes. If the pulp is too thick after the soaking and straining a little bit of water can be added. Conversely, if your mixture is too thin then just cook it a bit longer and it will thicken.
Recipe Pairings For The Tamarind Dipping Sauce
The following recipes pair perfectly with this dipping sauce. Try them!
Tamarind Dipping Sauce
- ½ cup tamarind
- 3 cups water
- ¾ cups sugar
- 2 tbsp chaat masala
- Add the tamarind and water to a sauce pan and bring to a full rolling boil
- As soon as you reach the first boil turn the stove off and leave the mixture in a covered pan
- After 2 hours you will have a thick pulp
- Run the pulp through a fine meshed strainer to remove any pits and fibre
- Place the strained mixture back in your saucepan with the sugar and chaat masala and bring to a boil, cook at a simmer for 30 minutes or until it starts to thicken
- Cool and refrigerate for up to 1 week or freeze for up to 3 months