Tamarind is an underutilized ingredient in most American kitchens, which is a shame given its robust yet delicate flavor that lends itself to both sweet and savory dishes. Most ubiquitous in India, this legume comes from fruit pods produced from the tamarind tree. You've probably seen tamarind used in curries, sweet drinks, and other ethnic fare, but that's merely the beginning when it comes to this ingredient's versatility. Apparently, tamarind can be used to tenderize meat--obviously, you won't see that technique used on PD, but there's always a vegan substitute :) Here, I marinated and baked some tempeh in a gingery tamarind sauce that's as addictive as it is easy. The only problem with this recipe is that you might want to gobble it up before it goes in the oven!
YIELDS 2-4 servings
- 1 package tempeh, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 tablespoons tamarind paste
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 2 teaspoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- Dash of cayenne
1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 2. In a medium bowl, whisk together all ingredients except tempeh. Once combined, add tempeh and toss until it is evenly coated in the tamarind mixture. Let marinate for 20 minutes. 3. Once the tempeh has finished marinating, bake for 15-20 minutes, watching carefully to ensure the tempeh doesn't burn.
Also by Molly: Almond Butter Gravy
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Photos: Molly Lansdowne