Spicy Sri Lankan Pol Sambol

Today we are sharing a taste of Sri Lanka with you. The ubiquitous and sublimely delicious “Pol Sambol” – pol being a Sinhala word for coconut.

Often eaten at breakfast heaped on to Pol Roti, this mouthwatering sambol also turns up at lunch and dinner as a refreshing, palate cleansing, side dish to rice and curry.

Moist, spicy and vibrantly orange it can’t fail to lift the heart when spotted on the dining table.

1 coconut | 1 small red onion | 1 small chilli | 2 limes | 1 tablespoon chilli powder

  1. Cut the coconut in half and pour the coconut water in to a cup. You don’t need the water for this recipe but it is crazy to waste it.
  2. Scoop out the coconut flesh and grate it.  We have a special coconut scraper/grater tool in Sri Lanka which makes this step very easy.  Without one you’d need to scoop out the flesh and blitz it gently in a food processor.
  3. Finely dice the onion and, if you desire, a fresh chilli too.  Add to the coconut along with the chilli powder and lime juice.
  4. Stir until thoroughly combined

Serve as a light lunch with flatbread or as an accompaniment to curry dishes. Keep any leftover sambol refrigerated and it will last for ages. Except it won’t because you won’t be able to resist eating it all on the first day