A sweet and sour-tasting legume (or pod) with a hard, brown shell and a fleshy pulp that is used in Indian, Asian, Middle Eastern and Mexican cuisines. Fresh tamarind can sometimes be bought in New Zealand at greengrocers, Asian food stores and some supermarkets but tamarind pulp and paste are more widely available. Sold in a block in all Asian food stores and in the International section of supermarkets, the pulp is mixed with hot water, mashed to a paste and then strained to remove the seeds. If the pulp is not available, use tamarind paste that comes in a jar. The pulp, however, has more flavour.
Read Ray McVinnie's tamarind know-how