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Maldiviana |  Dining
 
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A Taste of Lanka

Sri Lanka is synonymous with spices and its locals maintain a love affair with everything spicy (you’ll soon find out for yourself). From Hoppers to Kottu, come taste cuisine found nowhere else in the world.

 
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Dining

The Sinhalese, Tamil, Muslim and burger communities hold a legacy to an avenue of mouthwatering cuisine that is as diverse as the island itself. It is no secret that local love their curry and wherever you go rice and red curry, whether its meat or a spicy vegetable curry, will arouse your taste buds. If your wish is international cusine, Colombo city has a wide range of restaurants serving fast food, Chinese, Italian, Arabian, Indian, Japanese and German. Mcdonalds, KFC, Coffee Beans and Barista are established in the island.

In Mount Lavinia and down the southern coast, avail yourself to a banquet of seafood delights from fresh prawn and crab to fish with a local spin on the preparation and presentation. In the hill country you can find dishes made out of fresh cabbages, carrots, leeks and the like as they grow best in cool climates. Up North where the Dravidian influences dominate, South Indian cuisine such as vadai, thosai and ghee rice are the norm. Around the country you can find a unique form of Sri Lankan fast food: Kottu, Hoppers, Egg Hoppers and String Hoppers that are loved by locals. These cuisines are unique to the island. Travelers to the country are often amazed and delightfully surprised by the different types of cuisine available in Sri Lanka, Some of their favourites are pol sambol (spiced coconut) and parippu (dhal), which are everyday food among locals.

Where to eat in Colombo?

Colombo City has a variety of place to dine. Most of the large city hotels have their own restaurants that offer different types of cuisine from authentic Chinese, spicy Sri Lankan, Indian to Vietnamese. These restaurants usually have an ambience to match. More places can be found around the city to dine. In Mount Lavinia you can easily find seafood restaurants.

Fast Food

Restaurants, outlets and takeaways that specialize in typical fast food such as hotdogs, burgers and pizzas can be found in most main cities while others cater to a more Sri Lankan palette with pastries, filled rottis, thosais and vadais which are more or less Sri Lankan fast food.

Bakeries and Patisseries

The sweet aroma of baked breads, savoury and sweet breads emanate from them. All sorts of pastries and cakes too are available.

Pubs/bars and Cafes

Colombo has a number of pubs and cafes where you can relax and converse while enjoying your usual beverage or trying something new and exciting.

International Cuisine

Restaurants offering Swiss, Thai, Singaporean, Japanese, Pakistani, Mediterranean, Italian, German can be found in and around the capital city. Steak and Grill Houses are few as are those offering Fusion cuisine.

Malls

The popular malls in Colombo have restaurants and food courts that offer diverse cuisine.

Takeaways

You can find many takeaways in Colombo and the suburbs. Most of these offer Sri Lankan, Indian and Chinese cuisine. However, Chinese cuisine in these places are a bit spicy than the authentic Chinese cuisine.

International Franchises

Macdonalds, KFC, Coffeebean and Baristas are the more popular franchises established in the island. These are popular hangout for people of all ages, especially the youth and among expats.

Saivar Kade

This is what the locals call a no fuss eatery that will usually have Indian cuisine amongst meals such as Kottu, Hoppers and even short eats. You can usually buy cigarettes here and grab a cup of tea or coffee. – Frequented by people from all walks of life.

Indian Restaurants

There are good Indian Restaurants in the city that serve authentic Indian; some of these are Indian Franchises.

Spices

A typical Sri Lankan kitchen has the following spices at hand. Tasty curries are whipped up with the help of: chillie, saffron, curry powder, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves and pepper.

Coconut

The coconut tree is a Sri Lankan heritage. Apart from its extraction for wood and coir it plays a major role in shaping Sri Lankan cuisine.

Coconut Milk

There is something very comforting about a curry that has coconut milk in it. The coconut milk is used make and thickens curries. Firstly, the coconut is scraped, doused in warm water and the cream is extracted by squeezing it by hand. Some curries you have to try are Sri Lankan Potato Curry and Kiri Hodi. Another favourite is Kiri bath or milk rice that is made by adding coconut milk to boiled rice. The rice is then set on a tray and cut in diagonals into diamond like pieces.

Pol Sambol

Sri Lankans love this and can never get enough of it. Pol Sambol consists of scraped coconut flavoured with red chillie pieces and chillie powder making it look orange. This can be eaten with bread for breakfast or with rice for lunch.

Red Curry and Red Rice

Red curry is prepared by tempering spices, onion and garlic. Meats are prepared in this way and go great with the Sri Lankan staple red rice. The health benefits of Red rice cannot be stressed enough. Red rice aids in lowering cholesterol and is good for beating diabetes. Further red rice is more nutritious and tastier than white rice. Its roughage helps in keeping a lean body.

Dhal

Sri Lankans love their Dhal Curry. Dhal and bread is eaten in every home at least one day of the week. It is made with a great infusion tempered garlic, onions, Rampe, curry leaves and mustard seeds.

Mallum

Uniquely Sri Lankan this is the local version of a salad. It might be bit of an acquired taste for foreigners. Made using green herbs such as Mukunuwenna, Kathurumurunga and Gotukola, these can be made raw or cooked. They are great sources of iron.

Jack Fruit, Bread Fruit, Manyoc and Sweet Yams

When Sri Lankans crave something other than rice but with the same substance they go for the above.

Jack fruit or Kos is the largest tree-born fruit. The fleshy parts are cleaned and cooked as a starchy meal. The meal can be complimented with Pol Sambol and a meat or fish curry. Jack fruit can even be made into a curry that can be eaten with rice. When ripe the fruit is sweet and can be eaten as a dessert.

Bread Fruit is a similar looking fruit but when cooked it is more soft and mushy than Kos and is great as an accompanying dish that can be eaten with rice or can even become the main meal.

Manyoc and Sweet Yams are technically roots. The skin has to be cleaned and the fleshy parts boiled so that they become soft and edible. These are best eaten with Lunu Miris.

Lunu Miris

Finely chopped onions spiced up with chillie and salt. Traditionally eaten with milk rice.

The Kehel Kole (Banana Leaf)

In olden days, the Kehel Kole was widely used to serve lunch or to transport meals. The leaf wrapping will usually add more flavor to the meal. Also there was no washing to do afterwards and being biodegradable meant that it was 100% eco friendly. Today the practice is rarely scene and Sri Lankans seem to have forgotten the benefits of the Kehel Kole.

Hoppers, String Hoppers,Pittu and Koththu

These are uniquely Sri Lankan fast food options. Hoppers or Appa can be eaten plain or as egg hoppers (Biththara Appa). String hoppers are usally eaten with curries and sambol. While pittu are made with flour and are shaped into domes or rolls and eaten with Kiri Hodi and sambol. Kottu is loved by everybody and is a chopped up rotti flavoured with tempered vegetables. They can come in Chicken, Fish, Egg and Vegetable varieties. These can be found in food shops around the country.

Portuguese and Dutch Influences

Lamprais

The uniqueness of this dish is that the rice, chicken and other accompaniments come snuggly wrapped in a baked banana leaf. The aroma, when it is served to you, alone, sends your mouth salivating.

Sweet Meats

It is mostly during April that you will be able to sample these sweet delights. Some of these are Kokis, Kavum, Aggala, Asmi and Peni Walalu. However specialty shops selling these sweat meats can be found.

Watalappan

A favourite dessert among the locals it’s used for many a celebration. This is a delightful mixture of juggery, flour, eggs, cashews and spices baked together.

Kola Kenda for your health

This can be found at the breakfast buffet in most popular hotels. Kola Kenda is a porridge made from soupy rice with herbs mixed into it. It’s normally enjoyed with a piece of juggery.

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Hotel Villa Viana, No 64A/1, Modara Wella, Marawila

 

What they say:

私は素敵な旅行のために、もう一度あなたに感謝したいと思います。グループの誰もが両方のスタッフと旅程で、幸せでした。素晴らしい仕事。

Ichirō Tsukada – Akiruno-shi, Tokyo 197-0833 Japan

We have just arrived back in Kyiv after the most incredible holiday in Sri Lanka. It has been a tour of a lifetime arranged by Maldiviana Holidays. The 6 days we spent truly added so much to our experience. Our only sadness is that we were not able to spend more time

Kateryna Berezhnaya – m. Kyiv, 03110 Ukraine

My family have asked me to thank you once again for our wonderful tour of Sri Lanka. You looked after us so nicely & we saw more than we had expected. Historical places were totally magnificent, to finish with that relaxing beach holiday, but so much more besides.

Blažek Ivánek – Praha 4, 14000 Czech Republic

We spent 2 weeks in Sri Lanka & Maldives, in the capable hands of Maldiviana. Everything worked without a hitch. Excellent experience and I can’t say enough about guides. They were knowledgeable, but more importantly, they understood our expectations every time.

Oksana Fyodorova – Voronejskaya obl, 247112 Russia

 

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