I can’t get enough of Tamarind. I like it in candy form rolled in chile and sugar, or the sweetened pulp squishy in a little plastic packet that you squeeze to release. I like it as a soda flavor and always feel a little exotic drinking it. I’d even say I like it in my pad thai. But the way I love it best is as agua de tamarindo, refreshingly tart and sweet. It’s one of those tastes that makes you want to keep drinking. I try and reach the end of the tart to get to the sweet but love the long sip all the way there. I’m not the only one: agua de tamarindo is super popular all over Mexico and is very common in Latin households and restaurants. Follow these easy to do instructions and have yourself a long sip of delicious agua de tamarindo tonight.
Ingredients for Agua de Tamarindo:
- 1 – pound of tamarindo pods
- 13 – cups water
- 1 1/2 – cups sugar
- Peel outer shell and devein fleshy inner tamarind pods
- Place all inner tamarind pods in a pot and fill with 9 cups of water.
- Boil tamarinds and water for 35 minutes over a medium high flame.
- Remove from flame and let cool for 10 minutes.
- In a large pitcher add sugar and two cups of tamarind water, mix until sugar dissolves. Set to the side.
- Remove tamarinds from water (keep water for later use) and place in a sieve over reserved water.
- With the back of a spoon smash tamarinds against sieve to get the remaining pulp off of the seeds. Soon black seeds will be exposed and all the pulp will have fallen into the reserved water below.
- Slowly dip the bottom of the sieve into the reserved water and mix to make sure all pulp makes it’s way through the sieve. Continue till all tamarinds are done.
- Then dispose of seeds and pour the reserved water with tamarind pulp into pitcher with sugar water. Then add the remaining 4 cups of water to the pitcher. Give it a good mix and pour over ice in a tall glass or refrigerate over night.
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Tamarind Pods 1 of 8This is what tamarind pods look like and could be purchased at most Latin and Asian markets.
Breaking Off The Shell 2 of 8Remove the outer shell of the tamarind.
Fleshy Tamarind 3 of 8Once you remove the outer shell you will find the fleshy sticky inner tamarind.
Devein 4 of 8Pull at the stem at the top of the tamarind pod to easily devein.
Tamarind Pods In Pot 5 of 8Place all shelled and deveined tamarind pods in a large pot.
Water 6 of 8Add water and boil over a medium high flame for 35 minutes.
Boiled Tamarind Pods 7 of 8Once boiled, place tamarind pods in a sieve above the pot pods boiled in.
Removing The Flesh 8 of 8With the back of a spoon smash tamarinds against sieve and allow flesh to fall into the water below. Black seed exposure ensures you have removed flesh.