Summer Diet: How To Make South Indian-Style Tamarind (Imli) Curry For A Light Meal


  • Tamarind has a long history of medicinal usages
  • It helps to boost immunity and strengthen our body from within
  • Tamarind curry can be made quickly and is light on stomach

Let’s admit it, just the word ‘imli’ is enough to make most of us slaver! The tart-sweet taste of the fruit (also called tamarind) makes it a popular choice among the Indians for various culinary usages. From consuming a ripe tamarind as is to using it as spice and condiment for different recipes, imli is omnipresent in almost every Indian household. But did you know imli also has several health benefits? Tamarind has a long history of medicinal usages and as per Delhi-based nutritionist Lokendra Tomar, “this tangy fruit is packed with tartaric acid (powerful antioxidants), which helps to fight the growth of free radicals in the body.” It also helps to boost immunity and strengthen our body from within.

Hence, we bring you a simple and easy South Indian-style rasam-like tamarind curry recipe that can be made quickly and is light on stomach. Not just that, the rich vitamin C-content in tamarind makes this curry ideal for a soothing summer meal.

Also Read: Pepper Rasam: Boost Your Immunity With This Flavourful South Indian Soup 

Rich vit C-content in tamarind makes this curry ideal for a soothing summer meal

Here’s The Recipe For South Indian-Style Imli Curry:


Tamarind- 1 tablespoon

Garlic- 5-6 cloves (chopped)

Onion- 2 medium sized (small dice)

Green chilli- 2

Tomato (optional)- 1-2 (chopped)

Curry leaves- 8-10 leaves

Mustard seeds (rai)- 1 teaspoon

Dry red chilli (whole)- 1

Kashmiri red chilli powder- 1 teaspoon

Asafoetida (hing)- half teaspoon

Fenugreek (methi) powder- half teaspoon

Coriander (dhania) powder- half teaspoon

Cumin (jeera) powder- 1 teaspoon

Salt- as per taste

Sugar/Jaggery- as per taste

Oil (coconut/refined/canola)- 4 tablespoons


Soak the tamarind concentrate in one glass lukewarm water and keep aside.

Heat 3 tablespoon of oil in a pan and add onion, garlic, green chilli and fry till the onion turns golden in colour.

Add tomato if you want or ignore this step.

Now, add salt, sugar/jaggery, Kashmiri red chilli, coriander powder, cumin powder, methi powder and sauté them for a minute or two.

Strain the tamarind water and add to the pan and close the lid. Let the curry boil for some time.

Meanwhile, take another pan, add a tablespoon of oil and let it heat.

Add hing, mustard seeds, curry leaves, and dry red chilli and wait till the mustard seeds crackle.

Then temper the tamarind curry with this crackling spice mix.

A bowl of spicy and tangy tamarind curry is ready to relish.

Tamarind curry tastes best with steamed rice, papad and sabzi. You can also have it with coconut rice. If you want to make it at home, here’s the recipe for you. Happy cooking!

About Somdatta SahaExplorer- this is what Somdatta likes to call herself. Be it in terms of food, people or places, all she craves for is to know the unknown. A simple aglio olio pasta or daal-chawal and a good movie can make her day.

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