Tamarind Water Using the Pods
Hey guys! It’s nice to be back here. Today I am going to share the recipe for tamarind water.
Most probably you don’t think of tamarind as something you drink.
Oh but you do! It’s a typical beverage in Mexico. Tamarind water is a kind of “agua fresca” which is basically flavored water using fruits, flowers or even grains. You can find “agua fresca” in restaurants, “taquerias” and Mexican homes.
The most popular “agua fresca” flavors are “limon” (lime), “horchata” (made with rice and milk), “jamaica” (made using hibiscus flower) and – you guessed it – “tamarindo” (tamarind).
This sweet and sour brown fruit, shaped very much like a bean pod, comes from a tall tropical tree, and is also very popular in Asian and Caribbean kitchens. It is also used to make all sorts of candies in Mexico.
You can find tamarind in some farmer’s markets, Asian, Caribbean or Mexican food markets. It is best to buy it fresh, but it can be a hassle to peel it, so you can also purchase the pulp. However, please do not purchase a “just add water” tamarind syrup – your “agua fresca” will definitely not taste the same.
Hint hint: You can also follow the first 3 steps to create a tamarind puree, which you can use to cook anything you like!
- 10 tamarind pods
- 4 cups water
- 1/2 cups sugar or honey to taste
1. Peel tamarind and remove as many of the veins as you can.
2. Place in a bowl and cover with water. Allow tamarind to sit for about an hour or two, so the meat becomes soft.
3. Using your hands, puree the tamarind. You can use a fork but you will probably take a lot longer. Yes, it is messy but it is also the best part! Separate and discard the seeds and the remaining veins. You want a smooth puree.
4. Add water and blend.
5. Strain, sweeten with honey or sugar and enjoy cold. If you find it too acidic, add more water.
Karla Diaz Cano
Karla Diaz Cano is a photographer + designer from Mexico City based out of Miami, FL. She focuses on food + fine art photography + shares her work on her blog, Sal & Azucar. Karla is also a regular contributor for Honest Cooking + A Place for Twiggs. On the side, she runs a small jewelry business, Tiklari. You can read more about Karla on her blog, visit her facebook fan page, or follow her on twitter.