pomegranate molasses.. (you should get it at any middle eastern grocery store) or simply boil down a bottle of pomegranate juice (with no additives) till it thickens, 1 liter of juice yields about 1/3rd to 1/2 a cup (less if you really thicken it)
This may not be feasible if you're having trouble finding tamarind paste, but I've used tamarind concentrate before. As the name implies, it's concentrated, so I use 50% of the amount of tamarind paste the recipe requires and dilute it in equal parts water.
And, in an admission I'd only be willing to admit under my trusty pseudonym, I have used this trick before: 1 part lime juice: 1 part water: 25% dark brown sugar (example 1/4 lime juice, 1/4 cup water, 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar). This trick basically mimics the tangy/sweet flavor for the tamarind. If you're using it to make pad thai for your foreign exchange student from thailand, they will know you cheated. If you're making it for your brother-in-law from Iowa who thinks pad thai is one of the most awesome dishes at the Chinese restaurant, then you're good. It by no means hits the nail on the head, but it'll get you through in a pinch.
AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.
You could also put a touch of molasses in, if you don't have brown sugar . . . . . with perhaps a date or two, soaked in the lime juice/water and then crushed with a fork, for sweetness. (I have a date and tamarind chutney that I bought at an Indian grocer of which I'm quite fond. The date adds a whole new dimension.) ;o)
mix some fresh lemon juice, worcestershire sauce, and a dash of ketchup (I don't have measurements - I do everything by taste)
Tamarind paste has a strong fruity body, so in desperate times, if Panfusine's advice for pomegranate molasses is also an impossibility, I'd go for a very high quality lemon marmalade, or mango chutney, or any other sweet-tart fruity mix. They won't have the same depth as the tamarind, but they will do the trick.
Totally agree with nogaga. Keelers lime marmalade comes to mind,
Quince paste would also work. Whole Foods carries it in the Specialty Department.
Is quince paste just boiled quince, or more like a jelly Sweetened? Thank you.
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Well played. You deserve a cookie.
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