Why You Should Never Buy Tamarind Paste Again
If you've been using tamarind paste from a jar from cooking, let me try to convince you to never buy one of those again! I used to use those jars regularly myself because it was the most convenient thing, but I don't know if the products became worse or my standards became higher, but I eventually I became more and more dissatisfied with the quality of premade pastes. They started to taste really bland and diluted to me.
So I started making it from tamarind pulp. Tamarind pulp is that dark brown brick labelled simply as "Tamarind." You can find them at many Asian grocery stores. The tamarind paste that I make from the pulp has consistently been more flavourful and more sour, and sour is exactly what you want cooking tamarind to be!
I also started making it in large amounts, then cook it and store in mason jars which will last several months in the fridge. This way, I only have to go through the process a couple of times a year.
What is tamarind?
For this basic question I'm going to refer you to my Ultimate Guide to Tamarind video. It covers everything you need to know including the difference between cooking VS eating tamarind. I also show you what tamarind looks like in its original pod!
For more videos on other Thai ingredients
Check out my Thai Ingredient Playlist where I have informational videos about the most important ingredients in Thai cuisine.