The Tamarind is believed to have been native to tropical Africa and was transported to India thousands of years ago. The Tamarind is widely grown and distributed throughout tropical countries and regions such as India, Africa, Southern Asia, China and Taiwan.
The long-leaved tamarind tree is bushy and is known to grow as tall as 18 meters in height. The fruit from the tamarind tree can be eaten raw, but is largely used as an ingredient in food dishes. The elongated shape of the outer shell is quite unique and unmistakable in its appearance. The shell of the fruit is 12-15cm in length and colored brown.
The taste of the fruit can only be describes as sweet and sour. The tamarind is full of beneficial properties such as vitamin B, calcium and is high in acids and sugar. Tamarind can be used to cure numerous ailments and is widely renowned as a beneficial fruit with healing properties.
Tamarind is one of the staple ingredients used in Thai Cuisine, alongside chili, lemongrass and Lime. The fruit is widely distributed in a Tamarind Paste, which is used in numerous Thai curries. The Tamarind is usually dried with or without seeds and then packed and sold as a paste on markets and supermarkets. To add more taste to a Thai curry using tamarind paste, pour 3 or 4 teaspoons of water over the tamarind paste, squeeze the paste to extract the flavor and then pour into the curry.
Thailand produces a specific strand of Tamarind, which can be eaten raw. In Thailand, you can buy tamarind preserved in sugar and chili that is sold on Thai markets as a type of candy. Tamarind is also used in one of the country’s most famous dishes, Pad Thai, and the sweet taste from that derives from the tamarind as an ingredient.