Tamarind is a tree that bears edible fruit and despite the common belief that it is from India it's real origin is from Tropical Africa. The name Tamarind comes from the Arabic word "Tamar Hind" which means "Indian date". In Latin it is known as "Tamarindus" and in some countries, such as Spain, Italy and Peru (amongst others) it is often called "Tamarindo".The fruit is in the shape of a pod which, when cracked open, reveals a sticky and gummy fruit that is dark brown in color and looks like a date, but has a very sour taste. In Pakistan and India we use it as a souring agent in many of our curries, especially South Indian Cuisine, in Chutneys such as this one, to make refreshing drinks from it and even just to eat on it's own.
This recipe is a quick and sugar free version that I came up with as the original method is very time consuming to make. I eat this so often; with kebab, samosas, tikka, tandoori chicken, chana chaat, dahi baras, honestly with almost everything! I wanted to reduce the calories it contains so I can enjoy it as frequently without any guilt, you can make it with sugar if you prefer. I will of course post a recipe of the original at some point on the blog for those who want to go the extra mile and make the authentic version.
3 Tablespoons Tamarind Concentrate
1 Cup Water
½ cup Monk Fruit Sweetener (or regular sugar)
2 Teaspoons Chaat Masala
1.Mix all of the above ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil.
2.Reduce heat to low and simmer for about 15-20 minutes until the mixture has reduced by half.
*Do not worry if the consistency is a bit runny as the chutney thickens a bit more after cooling. We are aiming for a syrupy, molasses like consistency.