Spicy Plantain, Tamarind & Coconut Soup with Coriander & Mint

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Preparation info

  • For


    Generous Portions
    • Difficulty


Appears in

The Sugar Club Cookbook

By Peter Gordon

Published 1997

  • About

This is a really tasty soup that can also serve as a base for a meal. Sometimes at the Sugar Club we serve it with chicken or fish dumplings and lots of fresh coriander. You can also serve it with noodles, grilled fish pieces, shredded roasted duck or chunks of roasted pumpkin. You will need to use very ripe plantains to ensure the sweet taste that complements the sharpness of the tamarind. Look for fruit that is soft and has brown to black skin.


  • 100ml (fl oz) sesame oil
  • 4 cloves of garlic, peeled and cut into quarters
  • 1 green chilli, cut in half
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 2 red onions, peeled and sliced
  • 2 very ripe plantains, peeled and cut into 1 cm (⅓ in) chunks
  • 800ml (28fl oz) chicken or vegetable stock
  • 600ml (1 pint) unsweetened coconut milk
  • 250ml (9fl oz) tamarind paste
  • Tamari or sea salt
  • 1 cup fresh coriander leaves
  • ½ cup fresh mint leaves


In a large pot, heat up the sesame oil and add the garlic, the chilli and the seeds; fry on a high heat for ½ minute, stirring well. Add the onions and fry on a high heat for another 2 minutes, stirring continuously to prevent it burning on the bottom. Add the plantain, stock, coconut milk and tamarind and bring to the boil. Turn the heat to a gentle simmer and put the lid on the pot. Cook until the plantain is soft, then purée. Taste for seasoning and add tamari or salt to taste. Stir in the coriander and mint just before serving.