Sri Lanka is known world-wide for its beautiful beaches and exquisite cuisine. Our tropical environment laced with coconut palms that sway in the gentle breeze from the ocean surrounding Sri Lanka, gives a sense of total relaxation and tranquility only Sri Lanka can offer. This relaxation and tranquility gives way to your appetite for Sri Lankan food.
Our food no doubt is spicy and this is what gives the aroma and taste that continue to awaken your taste buds.
In today’s world with microwaves, heat-eat packs etc many people have lost the thought and sense of good food. In Sri Lanka it is not so. Even today you would see the clay pot gently begin to boil on a firewood oven. This process of “gentle-slow” cooking is the secret to the exotic cuisine Sri Lanka has to offer. These curries and vegetables are cooked for hours on firewood ovens, during which time all spices get naturally absorbed into the curry, thus enhancing the taste.
Today many foreigners who visit Sri Lanka either stay in Hotels laced on the beach front of 5-Star hotels in the City of Colombo or down South. Most, if not all of these Hotels cater to the western palate and very few expatriates or tourists to this country get to taste the real Sri Lankan dishes turned out by village folks. A very subtle tip is that visitors to our beautiful country should mingle with the local folk and there you would find the most exotic of dishes turned out using fresh herbs and age old recipes.
Sri Lankans are a friendly nation of people and no one would deter from showing a tourist the village culinary delight in Sri Lankan food.
When you visit the coastline you will be inundated with seafood, from the fish to prawns, crabs, squid (cuttlefish) prepared in a variety of mouthwatering recipes. When in the hill country the cool climate would see one eating hot Hoppers, Rotis, Fish Rotis and fiery spiced dishes. When in the North of the country, you would be treated to Thosai (Dosa), Ulundu Wade, Parippu Wade, Prawn Wade and a host of other delectable dishes. Hence Sri Lanka being a multi-ethnic country, you can rest assured of a delightful cuisine that only Sri Lankans can offer you. Sometimes one would wonder how curry could be consumed for breakfast. Well in Sri Lanka it is not so. No one wonders, as String Hoppers are best eaten with the Kiri Hodi (Coconut Soup) or a fiery chicken or fish curry.
A good meal should be something that fires up your senses. In Sri Lanka this experience is joined in by touch and taste. When one speaks of touch and taste, it is meant that all meals in Sri Lanka are best consumed by hand. To a Westerner this would be “atrocious”, but if you really need to delve in the tasty and spicy cuisine of our little Island, then eating with your “fingers” is the in-thing. No one would scoff at you for this, as this is a part of our culture. You need to feel the texture of your food, mix them up and then eat. Eating with your fingers would see you mixing a bit of each curry, vegetable and mallun or sambol together and then consuming it. The taste is heavenly. It is very simple. Roll up the rice and curry together and pop it into your mouth.