Inside these curious-looking brown pods you'll find sticky flesh that tastes similar to dates but is less sweet. In fact tamarind is also known as the Indian date and is one of the secret ingredients in Worcestershire sauce. Enjoy them as an after-dinner sweet, in the same way as dates.
Tamarind juice, compressed tamarind and tamarind concentrate are widely used in Indian and Asian cooking.
Fresh tamarind which has been sieved and de-seeded is available as a paste and is sold in jars with the herbs and spices.
Uses: Tamarind pods can be eaten raw. Reconstituted tamarind is a popular ingredient in Indian and south east Asian cuisine in a wide range of savoury dishes, including chutneys, curries and pulse dishes.
To store: Store in a cool, dry place out of direct sunlight.
To prepare: Remove the crisp pod and fibrous threads and enjoy the flesh, discarding the hard stones as you eat.