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What on earth is Amba and was I wrong to slather it on my chicken prior to roasting?

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I found it in the store and was intrigued as I hadn't noticed it before. What is it really supposed to be used for? With which spices/accompaniments does it go?

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  1. Amba is a North African condiment. Great in falafel or shawarma. It is pickled mango. I'm not sure I would put it on chicken prior to roasting, but I bet it is pretty good (if you like spicy and sour) as a dip for already roasted chicken.

    1. Amba also has a lot of turmeric (very good for you). It's more like a paste when you buy it in a jar. Thin it with water, and use as a sauce much like the way we use ketchup. Great on eggs, fries and of course grilled meat and chicken.

      1. My husband used it on the fish, chicken and who knows what else this Succos. He was not intimidated by the fact that numerous google entries refer to the power of Amba to change your body odor. I, however, am quite concerned about that and wonder how much of the stuff it takes to make a difference in how someone smells.

        6 Replies
        1. re: cappucino

          One ingredient in amba, fenugreek, can give the body an odor similar to maple syrup. It's usually only a side effect when you take fenugreek supplements or drink fenugreek tea.

          1. re: thekosherchannel

            It can also release that odor over large portions of Manhattan when a factory in NJ decides to process it as we saw a couple years ago.

            1. re: thekosherchannel

              It is indeed that ingredient, but I don't believe it must be in supplement or tea form to mess up your smell. It would be nice for someone to weigh in here as to whether there is enough in the Amba to work that magic, how much or how often it takes to work and if it wears off over time. I can tell you that I worked with someone who ate too many carrots regularly and was proud of her orange skin color. The rest of us were completely weirded out by it. Every once in a while, I think of her and wonder whether she is still that orange..

              1. re: cappucino

                The mommy boards say that women who use fenugreek for increasing breast milk production start smelling like maple syrup within a week of taking the equivalent of 1/2 tsp of the fenugreek seeds per day. I doubt there is more than 1/2 tsp of seeds in a whole jar of amba. However, if you start smelling maple-ish, I think I would quit unless it smells better than your regular body odor :) Some people also believe that fenugreek can help prevent Alzheimers.

                1. re: mamaleh

                  Also, I saw a claim that chlorophyll can reverse the odor.

                  1. re: mamaleh

                    The chlorophyll sounds interesting. I believe it is a Russian Roulette type thrill that is driving his continued consumption of it. That's what happens when you are middle-aged and cannot afford a red convertible. I do find it interesting that only a couple of chowhounds seem to have an opinion about the amba itself or how to use it. I would like to hear more about that.