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LOCATION: Recipes >> Asian >> Nam Prik Makham Piag (Tamarind Dip)

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This dip is made from mature, or brown, sour tamarind. This should be
peeled before use and the fibrous strands within the pod and the seeds
of the fruit discarded. You may also buy tamarind in a compressed block,
and this is equally suitable.

This recipe is an example of Thai unwillingness to let anything go to
waste: tamarind water is used as an ingredient of many dishes, and is
prepared as shown below. Yet this dip is something to use the tamarind
paste that otherwise might be discarded. In general, we make tamarind
juice (nam makham piag) when we need to use it. All that is required is
to store the paste in a jar until you have enough to make the dip.
However, don't make the mistake we did once of using a Tupperware
container to store the paste--the tamarind stained it and we were never
able to get it clean. Use a glass preserving jar and keep it in the


* 1 cup makham piag (sour tamarind) paste
* 1/4 cup kung haeng (dried shrimp)
* 1/4 cup hom daeng (shallots), chopped
* 2 tablespoons kratiem (garlic), chopped
* 2 tablespoons nam pla (fish sauce)
* 1 tablespoon prik ki nu haeng daeng (dried red chilies)
* 1 teaspoon kapi (fermented shrimp paste)
* 1 teaspoon nam tan paep (palm sugar)


Place 2 tablespoons of tamarind paste (3 if the seeds are still in
place) in a jug, and pour 1 cup of boiling water over it. Leave to steep
for 15 minutes, then mash thoroughly, and leave to steep for a further 15

Pour the mixture through a muslin bag and squeeze thoroughly to extract
as much juice as possible. The juice is nam makham piag (tamarind
juice) and may be used in other recipes. Ensure that you discard any
remaining seeds or fibrous material from the pulp and reserve it. You
need 1 cup of "exhausted" tamarind pulp for this recipe.

Pound the shrimp in a mortar and pestle.

Dry fry the chilies until aromatic and then crush.

Place the shallots and garlic, unskinned, under the grill or broiler,
and toast until aromatic and the skins begin to discolor, then peel and
chop. After preparation you should have the quantities listed.

Fry the shrimp paste in a very small amount of oil until aromatic.

Combine the ingredients and grind to a smooth paste in a mortar and
pestle (or food processor), then fold in the tamarind paste.

Serving and Storage:

Accompanies fish dishes or vegetable crudities.
Will keep 2-3 weeks in a refrigerator.


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