Sunday, November 4, 2012

Jus de tamarin - Tamarind refreshing drink

Tamarind is a tropical fruit and found everywhere in Mauritius more so in the south of the country and there is even a village called Tamarin in the district of Black River. When ripe the fruit is sweet and sour and is extensively used in Indian cuisine as well as many other Asian cuisines (Thai ..). The trees grow very tall and we used to go pick tamarinds under the trees when in season and these would be turned into of array of different things such as tamarind candy balls, tamarind paste for cooking , tamarind syrup for refreshing drinks in summer . I recently came across tamarind for sale at my local No Frills store ! I simply could not resist .


1 bag of tamarind
1 litre of water
2 cups of brown sugar

  • Peel tamarind and remove from outer layer
  • Put in a pot and add sugar
  • Cook for 1 hour on low heat
  • Remove all the pits and strain to remove all impurities
  • Mix with water and add ice
  • Enjoy on a hot summer evening !

Achard de légumes - Raw vegetable pickle

Achard de legumes is a crunchy mixed vegetable pickles Mauritian style. It is usually served as a side to many main courses more so with rice dishes. Very easy to make and if you have left over vegetables you are not sure what to do with , give it a try !


4 carrots
1/2 medium sized cabbage
2-3 green chillies
4-5 green beans (optional)
2 cloves of garlic
1/2 tsp of turmeric powder
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp of salt
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tsp of tamarind paste if not available substitute with 1 tsp of vinegar


  • Slice carrots finely and shred cabbage using a mandolin slicer (or use a knife instead)
  • Slice green beans if using
  • Remove seeds from green chillies and slice finely as well and set aside
  • Slice clove of garlic and set aside
  • Take all vegetables and put in a colander
  • Add the salt and mix well . Leave to rest for 15-20 mins
  • Boil water and pour onto vegetables to rinse properly
  • Now drain and take all excess water out by pressing vegetables in between hands (wear gloves if you wish )
  • Add all other ingredients (turmeric, mustard seeds, green chillies, garlic , oil and tamarind or vinegar ) and mix well
  • Leave pickle to rest for an hour or so
  • Adjust salt if necessary (will be salty from the first step of adding salt and leaving it to soak in it for 15 mins. Even after rinsing usually vegetables remain salty )
  • Serve with rice or any other main dish