Love for food is something universal. it’s something every human being have in common. We always say art is an expression of self and considering how it defined the food culture we can think of making food as a form of art as well. Since the discovery of fire to cookie dough ice cream ,human being has been exceptional in creativity towards turning something that should be the most mind numbing boring thing ever (re fueling) into argumentatively the biggest flex the world has ever known (its either food or war). So let’s breakdown what Sri Lanka contribute to this madness of food.
Sri Lankans are like pretty much any other rice fed Asian. We love eating rice .When I was little I renounced everything Sri Lankan. Our traditions with regard to , food, clothes ,art etc, But as I growing up I realized what an ungrateful kid I was and started loving everything hated. One of those things is rice and curry. The ultimate homemade meal in Sri Lanka. What I love about rice and curry is the fact that it’s the most customized meal you are ever going find. Your taste buds will go crazy with the combinations of flavors and create unique taste with every bite. Most of Sri Lankan curries are vegan and non vegan curries are second to none. Nicely cooked rice, dhal curry, chili paste and a crispy papadam is enough to satisfy your taste buds. Quoting jay prince “they ask me where I’m from! parippu rice done” . There are about hundred different ways of making the rice in Sri Lanka . One of the all time favorite choices is milk rice locally known as “Kiribath”.According to my knowledge it looks very simple to make and tricky at the same time. It made using coconut milk and any type of rice. if I might add. ‘kiri bath’ is usually made for breakfast when we’re celebrating something special. It’s a dish made for auspicious event and celebrations.
In addition to that hoppers are a go to Sri Lankan food which is ideal for breakfast and light dinner. As far as I know there are several different kinds of hoppers in Sri Lanka.the basic ones which you can eat with something spicy or sweet, Egg hoppers (sunny side up), and the glorious ‘pani appa’ (Hoppers made with caramelize sugar syrup ) . I dare you to try ‘Pani appa’ and vanilla ice cream. If you are like trying out new things, Try to find local food trucks called creep runner, they put a very modern touch to a centuries old south Asian recipe the dosa and made something inspiring that anyone can enjoy. I think everyone in Sri Lanka would agree that ‘ isso wada’ at gall face green is one of the best local street food . There are several kinds of ‘wada’, each one containing different flavor explosions.
One day when you’re taking a walk and you might hear Beethoven playing from a tuk tuk. That’s when you’ve bumped into a ‘ choon pan’ tuk tuk. We call them Choon pan tuks are basically bread and pastry stores on wheels. one of the most sought over sri lankan breads is called ‘ roast pan . I think it’s safe to say there’s no other bread like it. Which has a really great texture to it that marry really well with all kinds of curries in Sri Lanka.I personally I like it as aside for a good soup. When we talk about things don’t exists anywhere else Chinese rolls and other spicy pastries are second to none. Every pastry in Sri Lanka has a unique taste and authentic identity.These Chinese rolls are an awesome deep fried pastry which is very popular among locals like most of them. ‘Halapa’ is an old snack kind of food in Sri Lanka which is a good choice in terms of balance between health and taste. It’s made by making dough out of bran and coconuts and steaming it after putting a chuck of the dough inside (macaranga peltata \kanda) leaf and folding it in half and there are a lot of other similar authentic healthy food items you can find. Our ancestors knew how to use natural resources without harming the environment and I think that’s something we need to go preserve for very long time. If you look for crunchy goodness in a snack, you really should try ‘kokis’. That’s is another traditional festive food that’s not really available year round, unless you make it by yourself. it’s pretty straight forward to make once you get the hang of it and it’s so worth it. There are so many things to chose from in terms of dinner , string hoppers, all kind of roti, pittu, and etc. But koththu is definitely the star of the show. Something you won’t miss if you have a night walk in any town in Sri Lanka.
Tea is the most popular drink here and Ceylon tea is one best tea in the world. There is a type of green health shake called ‘kola Kanda it’s made out of edible leaves and herbs, it’s good for you as a herbal drink . As deserts go ‘watalappam ‘ is a dish loved by all and check out “ pol cake (coconut cake). its gonna be another blast of taste for your mouth. There are about million other SL foods that are worth talking about but I’ll just leave you with some curiosity . Food means a lot to anyone I mean come on, you know! , food connects people, creates friendships, fixes old ones, brings whole families together and good food means happiness all around.
One more thing, There’s a foundation called sharethemeal.org which feed hungry children around the world, do check it out. Sharing is caring 🙂
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