Tamarind Fig Butter
Oh, just a few more flowers.
It’s the time of year when summer has peaked and you can feel the pendulum heading the other direction, when sunlight and flowers feel finite. At least that is what we’re feeling here in the north lands…away from the turmoil of the epic storms all across the south. So here are a few moments of calm with flowers and sunlight, a breath before diving back into the realities and residuum of the Storm Aftermath and the work that lies ahead.
Here are ways we can help:
Tamarind is a secret ingredient in many a sauce, chutney, marinade, and beverage. Its pulp is tart and loaded with a complex potent flavor (not to mention minerals, phytochemicals and antioxidants) that goes well with both sweet and savory dishes, everything from candy to Worcestershire sauce.
The Tamarind tree, indigenous to Africa, produces a pod-like fruit with a dark edible pulp and large seeds inside. Today most commercial tamarind is grown in India, Thailand and Mexico. “Sin semilla” means without seed, and having spent waaaay too much time separating out the seeds from the pulp I would highly recommend buying the seedless paste (though pieces of seeds are occasionally in the seedless).
I needed an amended butter to go with the Seed Savers dinner of the Cubano Trio, Fresh Hominy Gorditas, Chile Lime Slaw, and Bean Salad so tamarind seemed like a natural fit with a menu of that region. Tamarind loves a little sweetness so my first thought was to make a Tamarind-Date butter, but I already had a pile of Calmyrna figs and I suspected that combo would be a happy marriage. Indeed it was, a very happy marriage! We served it with onion baguettes but it’s awesome on everything I’ve tried so far.
Tamarind Fig Butter
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Add to a food processor:
1 cup (2 sticks) Butter, softened
3 Calmyrna Figs, chopped
1/4 cup Tamarind Paste (without seeds)
Pulse chop to mix then blend together.
Serve with anything from bread, crackers, fruit, fish, cinnamon rolls, pasta, chicken, pancakes, toast, vegetables….you get the picture.