Sri Lanka’s spice flavoured, exotic dishes can excite even the discriminating palate of the seasoned foodie travellers. In spite of its size, Sri Lanka offers a variety of flavours and unique dishes that are distinct to each region be it the northern tip, the hilly central area or the southern tip of the island. If you want to taste the different styles of cooking and the spices in Sri Lanka, visit all parts of the island to meet and greet the local falvours.


In the southern coast of the island fishing villages have come up with delectable combinations of spices and herbs to cook seafood. The essential Malabar tamarind, curry leaves and pandan leaves, salt and black pepper make up the essential ingredients list for a delicious sour fish curry enjoyed in these parts. Some of these villages are namely, Galle, Tangalle and Kalutara. Restaurants in resorts such as Anantara Kalutara Resort too offers Sri Lankan dishes in all their authenticity.


Over the decades, Sri Lankans have adopted many spices and herbs to cook their favourite dishes. Dried cardamom, coriander seeds, fennel seeds, mustard seeds, cinnamon and fenugreek seeds are ground together to a thin powder to make a powerful spice mix that Sri Lankans all over the island use to flavor their vegetable, meat and fish curries. Turmeric, coriander leaves, tamarind and nutmeg too are essential ingredients in Sri Lankan cuisine.


Above all the national favourite and the most abundant nut in the island, coconut functions as a key ingredient in Sri Lankan cooking, lending different textures and flavours to a multitude of dishes in various forms. The scraped insides of a coconut can be used to make a piquant ‘pol sambol’ with the combination of onions, garlic, chilli flakes, green chillies, salt and a refreshing dash of lime or lemon. Coconut cream provides a creamy base for other flavours to blend in a harmonious setting to lend a delectable taste to Sri Lankan dishes.


Intrigued by history, art and food, Lavinia Woolf is a writer who is passionate about the extraordinary and writes of the exhilarating and enchanting.