1 lb. whole tamarind pods (500g)
3/4–1 cup granulated sugar
2 qt. water (2 lt)
Crack the outer peel of the tamarind pods. Separate the fruit from the stringy interior veins, discarding the veins. (Don’t worry about removing the seeds yet.) Place the deveined and peeled tamarind pods in a 2 quart (2lt) saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil reduce heat and simmer for 25 minutes or until the tamarind pods are soft. Drain.
Place a mesh strainer over a 2qt (2lt) mixing bowl. Press the cooked tamarind pods through the mesh strainer, breaking up the pods and scraping the pulp against the mesh to remove the seeds. The tamarind pulp will drop into the bowl. You may have to do this in batches to accommodate all the pods. Discard the seeds that remain in the strainer. You should have about 1 1/2 cups (360ml) of pulp. Place the pulp in 2 qt (2lt) pitcher. Add the water and sugar to taste. Stir well to combine. Served chilled over ice.
Substitute artificial sweetner for granulated sugar if desired.