Make Ahead

Tropical Tamarind Ketchup

August 26, 2010
4 Ratings
  • Makes about 3/4 cup
Author Notes

This is a fabulous all-purpose sauce. It combines a dark fruity sweetness with peppery and tangy overtones. A good steak sauce, it also works as a sandwich spread. It is very good with cheese, eggs, and legumes. Mixed with cream cheese and a bit of liquid, it is a great dipper for any little fried bites. —friendlyoaks

What You'll Need
  • 1/2 cup onions, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
  • 11 ounces tamarind nectar (such as Jumex brand)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup mango, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup raisins, plumped and chopped
  • 1 clove
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon sambal olek, or more if you want a more peppery sauce
  • 2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
  1. In a small saucepan, cook the onion in the vegetable oil until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic for the last minute.
  2. Add the remaining ingredients. Bring the mixture to a boil until it is reduced to approximately 3/4 cup and the vinegar taste has mellowed. Keep an eye on this as it cooks. Stir it frequently. As the sauce reduces, reduce the heat also to avoid burning or sticking. At the end of the process, the sauce will be cooking over a low heat instead of at a boil.
  3. When the sauce has reduced, cool it a bit. Put it through a food mill to create a chunky but smooth mixture.
  4. Spoon it into a clean glass jar and store in the refrigerator.
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See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • AntoniaJames
  • friendlyoaks

3 Reviews

AntoniaJames August 26, 2010
Quick question . . . I only have tamarind "paste" (a big block of sticky, seedless pulp). How does one substitute for the nectar, using the paste? Thanks!! ;o)
friendlyoaks August 27, 2010
I have never used tamarind paste - the reduced nectar (or in some cases unsweetened pomegranate molasses) is my standard substitution for it. To work backward, I think I would use an amount equal to the tomato paste along with 1 1/2 cups of water with the idea of making further adjustments the next time.
AntoniaJames August 26, 2010
This sounds sooo good! I love tamarind and use it all the time. And I love condiments. Really looking forward to making this! Wow. ;o)