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Back Plantain and Tamarind Soup

Plantain and Tamarind Soup
Categories:Soups & Stews, Vegetarian
Ethnic Origins:Other
Recipe Courtesy of:
 Ian and Kate Morton
 Hickatee Cottages
2 tbsp sesame oil
2 tsp cumin
1/2 - 1 tsp chilli flakes
1 large diced onion
2 tsp garlic
2 - 4 very ripe plantain, cut into pieces

1 pint chicken stock
2 50g packs of Grace's coconut milk mixed with 1/2 pint water
1 can tamarind juice

Cilantro to taste
Salt and pepper to taste
Heat the sesame oil in a saucepan and, when hot, add the cumin and chilli flakes and let them sizzle for about 20 seconds to release their flavours.
Lower the heat and add the diced onion, and the garlic (being careful not to let the garlic burn and become bitter).
Once the onions soften, add the sliced plantain and let it cook for a couple of minutes.
Next add the chicken stock, tamarind juice, and coconut milk (1 1/2 to 2 pints in total of liquid).
Bring the saucepan to the boil, and then reduce the heat and let it simmer until the plantain is very soft.
Take the saucepan off the heat, and blend the mixture. You may want to add more liquid if the soup is too thick (this isn't an exact science, and depends on the size of plantain available!).
Return the saucepan to the heat, add plenty of chopped fresh cilantro (coriander to you Brits!), and salt and pepper to taste!
Serve with crusty bread, mix with good friends and conversation, and enjoy!
For a vegetarian version use vegetable stock instead of chicken stock or, if none is available, use extra onion, celery, and some mushroom soy sauce (you may want to omit extra salt if you use soy sauce).
Recipe idea kindly passed on by Brian Holland at Belize Minerals Ltd, inspired by the Sugar Club cookbook!
Enjoy experimenting with the quantities of plantain, tamarind and coconut for your own special blend! More cumin for that East Indian flavour, more coconut for a milder, more creamy soup, or more tamarind with its sharp flavour to cut through the sweetness of the plantain!

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