The fruit pulp is edible and popular. The hard green pulp of a young fruit is very sour and acidic, so much so that it cannot be consumed directly, but is often used as a component of savory dishes. The ripened fruit is edible, as it becomes less sour and somewhat sweeter, but still very acidic. It is used in desserts as a jam, blended into juices or sweetened drinks, or as a snack. It is also consumed as a natural laxative.
Interesting facts :
In Thailand, there is a carefully cultivated sweet variety with little or no tartness grown specifically to be eaten as a fresh fruit. It is also sometimes eaten preserved in sugar with chilli as a candy.
It is used in both Asian and Latin American cuisines and is also an important ingredient in Imli Chutney, a spicy North Indian condiment; Pulusu, a sauce from Andhra Pradesh, India; Worcestershire sauce;HP sauce; and the Jamaican-produced Pickapeppa sauce.
Tamarind is used in various types of chutney as a flavouring agent. In addition to tamarind other spices are added to the sauce such as sugar and spice to make the sauce a bitter sweet flavour. The tender pods and flowers are also pickled and used as a side dish.
In Mexico it is sold in various snack forms, where it is dried and salted, or candied.
A traditional food plant in Africa, tamarind has potential to improve nutrition, boost food security, foster rural development and support sustainable landcare.
Pad Thai, a Thai dish popular with Europeans and Americans, often includes tamarind for its tart/sweet taste (with lime juice added for sourness and fish sauce added for saltiness). A tamarind-based sweet-and-sour sauce served over deep-fried fish is also a common dish in Central Thailand. In Singapore and Malaysia it is used to add a sweet-sour taste to gravy for fish in a dish called asam fish.
In Northern Nigeria, It is used with millet powder to prepare Kunun Tsamiya, a traditional pap mostly used as breakfast, and usually eaten with bean cake.
Wickedfood Cooking School runs Johannesburg cooking classes throughout the year at its purpose-built cooking studios. Cooking lessons are run in the mornings and evenings 7 days a week (subject to a minimum of 12 people). The venue is also popular for corporate events and private functions – team building cooking classes, birthdays, kitchen teas, and dinner parties with a difference.
Our classes are hands-on, where every person gets to participate in the preparation of the dishes. They are also a lot of fun where you not only learn new skills, but get to meet people with similar interests. For corporate groups and teambuilding cooking classes these classes are a novel way of creating staff interaction or entertaining clients.