This chutney, made from a recipe in Julie Sahni's Classic Indian Vegetarian and Grain Cooking (William Morrow, 1985), is a popular dipping sauce for fried foods in northern India.
- 1 (2") ball tamarind pulp
- 1 1⁄4 tsp. cumin seeds, toasted and crushed to a powder
- 2 Tbsp. sugar
- 2 tsp. paprika
- 1 1⁄2 tsp. cayenne
- 1 tsp. amchoor (mango powder) or 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
- 1⁄2 tsp. ground ginger
- 1⁄4 tsp. garam masala
Put tamarind into a medium bowl, add 1 1⁄4 cups boiling water, and let soak for 30 minutes. Use your fingers to help dissolve softened pulp. Strain liquid through a sieve into a small bowl, pressing on remaining pulp. Set tamarind liquid aside and scrape remaining pulp back into medium bowl. Add 1⁄4 cup boiling water to pulp, let soak 5 minutes, then use your fingers to help dissolve pulp again. Strain liquid into bowl of tamarind liquid, pressing on remaining pulp. Continue soaking and straining process until tamarind liquid yields 1 1⁄2 cups. Discard remaining solids.
Add cumin, sugar, paprika, cayenne, mango, powder, ginger, garam masala, and salt to taste to tamarind liquid and stir until sugar dissolves. Chutney will keep refrigerated for 3 days and frozen for up to 6 months.