1/4 block (about 1 ounce) wet tamarind
- Put the tamarind in a small bowl with just enough warm water to cover it. Squash the tamarind with your fingers. Once it softens and the water turns brown and thick, pass the mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a separate bowl. The fine pulp and juice will go through, leaving behind the fibrous husk.
- Put some more warm water in the strainer and do a second pressing. You should be able to see the seeds and fibers. Discard these. You can do a couple more pressings until all the pulp has been extracted. You should have 5–6 tablespoons of pulp. The pulp will keep well in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.
- If all this seems too time-consuming and you need only a small quantity of tamarind, you can buy a jar of tamarind pulp or paste. This is different from and much better than jars of tamarind concentrate, which I find too dark, acidic, and gooey.
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Cover courtesy of Kyle Books
Excerpted with permission from Indian in 7 by Monisha Bharadwaj (Kyle Books, 2019).