Vietnamese Tamarind Drink Recipe (Đá Me)

In the hottest summer days, there is a favorite drink of Vietnamese people: Đá Me (Vietnamese Tamarind Drink). It’s simply because tamarind is a native fruit in this tropical country, with a pleasant tangy flavor and an aroma that stimulates our taste buds. The combination between tamarind, peanuts and some other toppings is really tasty. Nowadays, thanks to tamarind paste, we can make this drink everywhere in the world. Let’s try.

Vietnamese Tamarind Drink

Tamarind Paste

Tamarind is a tropical fruit known for its distinct sour taste, grown in Africa, South Asia, and Mexico. Thanks to its unique flavor, tamarind is a common ingredient in various cuisines, used in sauces, marinades, drinks, and desserts. Each tamarind includes a hard, brown skin, covering sticky, dense, and fibrous dark brown pulp, and hard seeds inside. From the pulp, we can turn it into tamarind paste for better storage for a longer time.

Tamarind paste is a key ingredient in various Asian cuisines, offering a unique sour and slightly sweet flavor. For example, in Vietnamese and Thai cuisines, there are a variety of dishes using tamarind, such as tamarind pork ribs, hotpot, soups, tamarind sauce with rice papers, pad Thai, tamarind chicken, tamarind candy, etc.

There are 2 types of tamarind paste: seedless and with seeds. Seedless tamarind paste is made by removing fibers and seeds, while the paste with seeds is simply the pulp of tamarinds after peeling the hard skins. To make Tamarind Drink, we can use both types of tamarind. In my opinion, I prefer using tamarind paste with seeds because it’s more original with the seeds and fibers, which results in a 100% similar drink with the version I enjoyed when in Vietnam. You can find both versions in many Asian grocery stores.

what is tamarind paste

Recipe of Vietnamese Tamarind Drink

In Vietnamese, Đá means Ice, and Me means Tamarind. Because it is usually served with ice, Da Me becomes the official Vietnamese name of Vietnamese Tamarind Drink. To make 1L of this drink, prepare:

  • Tamarind: 80g (4 tbsp)
  • Sugar: 100g (1/2 cup)
  • Water: 900ml (30.4oz)
  • Roasted peanuts: ½ cup
  • Ice: 2 cups

How to make Vietnamese Tamarind Drink

Step 1. Mixing Tamarind with Sugar

  • In a large mug/glass, add tamarind and sugar in. Press them until well combined. This step is to soften tamarind so that it can dissolve easily in water. The amount of sugar can be adjusted following your taste preference.

Step 2. Adding water to the mixture

  • Add an amount of water to the mix. Usually, the ratio between the sugar-tamarind mixture and water is 1:5 or less. For instance, with 180g sugar and tamarind, add 900ml water in. Stir until tamarind and sugar totally dissolves in water. Taste the drink and adjust the sweetness as well as tanginess by adding more sugar or tamarind.

Step 3. Adding ice and topping

  • Finally, add ice to the drink. Remember to put ice on top, then toppings like roasted peanuts. You can also use other nuts like hazelnuts, pine nuts or almonds, all works well with this simple drink.
Vietnamese Tamarind Drink

Serving and Storing

Because it’s Đá Me (Ice Tamarind Drink), it’s usually served with Ice because Vietnam is a tropical country, which is hot all year round, especially in the South. However, if you are trying this drink in a colder region, you can skip the ice, and chill the drink in the fridge instead. Remember to check the taste to adjust because of the lack of ice.

If you would like to make a large batch of Vietnamese Tamarind Drink and save it for later use, it’s possible. Store the mixture of tamarind, water and sugar in sealed bottles and always keep them in the fridge for a maximum of 5 days. When drinking, add ice and toppings like roasted peanuts, almonds, etc.

Vietnamese Tamarind Drink

Vietnamese Tamarind Drink (Đá Me) Recipe

Yield: 4
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

In the hottest summer days, there is a favorite drink of Vietnamese people: Đá Me (Vietnamese Tamarind Drink)

Ingredients

Instructions

Step 1. Mixing Tamarind with Sugar

  • In a large mug/glass, add tamarind and sugar in. Press them until well combined. This step is to soften tamarind so that it can dissolve easily in water. The amount of sugar can be adjusted following your taste preference.Vietnamese Tamarind Drink

Step 2. Adding water to the mixture

  • Add an amount of water to the mix. Usually, the ratio between the sugar-tamarind mixture and water is 1:5 or less. For instance, with 180g sugar and tamarind, add 900ml water in. Stir until tamarind and sugar totally dissolves in water. Taste the drink and adjust the sweetness as well as tanginess by adding more sugar or tamarind.Vietnamese Tamarind Drink

Step 3. Adding ice and topping

  • Finally, add ice to the drink. Remember to put ice on top, then toppings like roasted peanuts. You can also use other nuts like hazelnuts, pine nuts or almonds, all works well with this simple drink.Vietnamese Tamarind Drink

Notes

Because it’s Đá Me (Ice Tamarind Drink), it’s usually served with Ice because Vietnam is a tropical country, which is hot all year round, especially in the South. However, if you are trying this drink in a colder region, you can skip the ice, and chill the drink in the fridge instead. Remember to check the taste to adjust because of the lack of ice.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 250ml
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 120

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2 Comments

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