Definition of tamarind in US English:



  • 1Sticky brown acidic pulp from the pod of a tree of the pea family, widely used as a flavoring in Asian cooking.

    • ‘Add the fish sauce, palm sugar, lime or tamarind, and thin coconut milk.’
    • ‘Basically, it is a fish stew mixed with squash, sweet potatoes, okra, tamarind, and different kinds of peppers.’
    • ‘Some Pad Thai dishes use pickled garlic and tamarind, which may not be readily available; the tomato paste and paprika used here give the noodles the familiar red tint as well as seasoning.’
    • ‘Other starters sounded well worth a try, such as the sambusek - deep-fried pastry parcels filled with spinach, feta cheese, sultanas and pine nuts, served with sweet tamarind, tomato and mint chutney.’
    • ‘An automatic arrival is the sambar, a vegetable sauce/soup based on yellow dal, tamarind and vegetables.’
    • ‘Prawns are tossed in olive oil and garlic in an iron souk flavoured with a subtle hint of tamarind.’
    • ‘There are three other chutneys - tamarind, mint and milder coconut - from which to choose, along with a panoply of yogurt salads, marinated vegetables and pickle relishes.’
    • ‘My favorite of these was an appetizer of braised yellowtail tuna served in a milky, aromatic dressing made with ginger and tamarind.’
    • ‘Malay food beckons all with its fantastic curries and herb-spiced flavours - lemongrass, coriander and tamarind make up much of the taste.’
    • ‘She said that there was so much to be had - rice, dal, tamarind, clothes - if only she could go out and get it.’
    • ‘We developed this glaze based on tamarind and palm sugar - two flavours that are often found together in South East Asian cooking.’
    • ‘Along with curry, food is seasoned with hot red peppers, tamarind, garlic and ginger, cardamom, cinnamon, curry leaves, fenugreek and tiny black mustard seeds.’
    • ‘A variety of fruits and vegetables are eaten, including mango, papaya, tamarind, oranges, bananas, watermelon, cucumber, pacayao, lettuce, tomatoes, and radish.’
    • ‘In a funky setting, explore artfully presented skewered meats, seafood and rice, perfumed with tamarind, coconut milk, anise, chillies, garlic and ginger.’
    • ‘I tried a few new recipes, but nothing too exotic, because I wasn't sure how to go about finding galangal, shrimp paste, fenugreek, black cumin, or tamarind.’
    • ‘Sour and acid tastes are liked, and are manifest in the use of lime juice, tamarind, etc.’
    • ‘Cool and grind along with salt, tamarind and six tablespoons of water into a smooth paste.’
    • ‘There are candied kumquats (‘Lovely with the pork,’ my waiter murmured), rhubarb ketchup, and mustards flavored with papaya or tamarind.’
    • ‘We were treated to a beautiful whole pomfret, stuffed with tamarind and mango, served in a luscious coconut curry.’
    • ‘Overall the chaat plates seem to include lots of little crispy fried things, like puris, also cubed potatoes, raw onions, chickpeas, tamarind and yoghurt.’
    1. 1.1 The pod from which tamarind is extracted.
      • ‘Tamarinds may be eaten fresh, but they are most commonly used with sugar and water in the American tropics to prepare a cooling drink.’
      • ‘Soak the tamarind in water and squeeze out the juice.’
      • ‘Remove the seeds from the tamarind and discard.’
      • ‘Tamarinds may be left on the tree for as long as 6 months after maturity so that the moisture content will be reduced to 20% or lower.’
      • ‘The whole month of April will see every visitor to the showroom receive half a kilo of tamarind fruit.’
      • ‘Hydroxycitric acid is derived from the Malabar tamarind tropical fruit native to India.’
      • ‘Soak the tamarind in 1 1/2 cups of water, squeeze well and strain out the juice.’
      • ‘Put tamarind pods in a small saucepan and barely cover with boiling water.’
      • ‘Soak the tamarind in 1 cup of water for 20 minutes.’
      • ‘Soak the tamarind in a little water and take out the pulp.’
      • ‘To preserve tamarinds for future use, they may be merely shelled, layered with sugar in boxes or pressed into tight balls and covered with cloth and kept in a cool, dry place.’
      • ‘Soak the tamarind in 2 cups of water, squeeze and strain out the juice.’
  • 2The tropical African tree that yields tamarind, cultivated throughout the tropics and also grown as an ornamental and shade tree.

    Tamarindus indica, family Leguminosae

    • ‘Back home in some Indian villages and even in the city, the night heron, the pond heron and the egret roost habitually amid the thick foliage of the mango, the tamarind and the neem in yards around houses.’
    • ‘It had been cleaned in the morning and they could see a heap of faded flowers at the foot of a tamarind tree nearby.’
    • ‘The so-called ‘sweet tamarinds’, of the genus Inga, grow in tropical America and bear fruits with edible pulp.’
    • ‘It is among the more eco-friendly commercial enterprises in this region where you can still find a century-old tamarind tree overlooking the swimming pool and providing shade to diners on the patio.’
    • ‘Nothing more relaxing, you might think, than the weekly meeting of four friends in the shade of the tamarind tree.’
    • ‘By this time, the three of them had reached the tamarind tree.’
    • ‘Willow, olives and tamarind are also introduced as all are species that thrive on riverbanks.’
    • ‘The tamarind is native to tropical Africa and grows wild throughout the Sudan.’
    • ‘Perched on its edge is the tented oasis, a convergence of date palms and tamarinds, hot springs and Bedouin hospitality.’
    • ‘The street is shaded mostly by tamarinds and bougainvillea.’
    • ‘Archaeologists have long known that certain tamarind trees were considered sacred.’
    • ‘There is a tamarind tree next to the tomb, which is reputed to be as old as the tomb itself.’
    • ‘The tamarind is prized for its pods, which grow in clusters and contain very small beans, surrounded by an attractively sour/acid pulp.’
    • ‘For instance, in the International Airport area, trees such as neem, tamarind, casuarina and ficus, which absorb sound extremely well, are recommended.’
    • ‘The exhibition includes a South African ficus, a tamarind with pods, elephant grass from Africa, cherry, bougainvillaea, fig, Accacia and trees collected from forests.’
    • ‘Along the banks grew knob thorns, sausage trees, vegetable ivory, ilala palms, mangoes, wild figs, tamarinds and mahogany, as well as the ubiquitous acacia.’
    • ‘There, you're welcomed by every conceivable fruit tree - oranges, tamarind and mango to name a few.’
    • ‘You see that huge tamarind tree, just outside the gate?’
    • ‘In the Virgin Islands the tamarind and the kapok are the two species most commonly held to be spirit trees.’
    • ‘Historically, the silk cotton is the paramount jumbie tree, although it has come to be rivaled by the tamarind.’


Late Middle English: from medieval Latin tamarindus, from Arabic tamr hindī ‘Indian date’.