Notes from a salty table: Tamarind syrup, dip or cream, call it what you wish

Tamarind is a native of Africa though it seems to feature more so in Asian dishes, however, it does make an entry into a few West African recipes and is readily available in The Gambia. There are some wonderful Swahili recipes that use much tamarind.
Tamarind is a glorious, sticky, acidic and tangy substance, starts off green but becomes a rich brown when made into a concentrate. Imported tamarind paste has a deep shine and reminds me of freshly polished brown shoes. Gambian tamarind tends to have a muddier colour, though is as tasty as imported.
This recipe is for sweet and savoury dishes and so shall mention a few here.
Fried plantain with the tamarind used as a dip; banana in a chilli pepper batter with drizzled tamarind syrup. Mango, papaya also appreciate tamarind. I do make an apple and tamarind crumble, tasty but rather rich.
For those with a savoury appreciation, one could coat a loin of pork, or rabbit – yes, rabbit and pork are used in the Gambia. Cook the loin till just ready, then paint a layer of the tamarind over and finish cooking. I often make roast sweet potatoes and add my tamarind syrup at the end of cooking.

You will need:

  • 3 heavy tablespoons of tamarind concentrate
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons of dried milk
  • 1 pudding spoon of honey-dark preferred
  • 1 cap of orange blossom water
  • water to loosen

In a bowl, place the tamarind concentrate, add your dried milk and blend. Dribble in a little water and mix; you can add more water – I tend to go for thick syrup, but it can be quite thin. Now add the honey and blossom water and mix.

Done and enjoy.


Let's start planing!

We live in The Gambia and we are happy to help you to plan your holidays. By choosing us, your time, your most valuable asset will be fulfilled with creative suggestions about where to go and what to do. You will know you are making the right choice because we are spending a lot of time on the road ourselves; scouting out new places, deepening relationships with locals involved, and finding places to eat, enjoy and stay.

Get everything set for your vacation and travel without worries!

Your questions and requests will be considered individually by one of our experts. You will receive special benefits that you can't get on your own or are not available on automatic booking systems. We will provide you with a wide range of information about activities you can choose to make your stay more vivid. You will have the assistance of a person, which will be there for you, will provide information to the details and use all the knowledge to make your trip memorable.
Let's start planing


Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on linkedin

Other Articles

Traditional Dish Recipe: Supa Kanja

A special dish loved by Gambians is supa kanja. Supa kanja is one of the main dishes of every home in The Gambia. It is prepared with okra as the main ingredient. Sometimes you can cook it with jute leaf or mix both. The recipe we prepared for you contains only okra, but feel free to improvise and find your best combination of ingredients.

Read More »

Made in The Gambia: Woven fabric

Weaving played a very important role in the history of The Gambia, but lately, the tradition of weaving is slowly disappearing. Most of the materials now are factory-made and imported. Due to the competitive pricing, The Gambia lost its place in the cotton industry to the places like Senegal. Hand-woven fabric is today very valued and rare to find.

Read More »
error: Content is protected !!