This Article is About
spices
sri lankan food
clove oil
coconut trees
crown jewel
indian cuisine
kidney stones
warm climate
Let Us Look At Some Spices That Make A Good Curry
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Let us look at some spices that make a good curry

Spices play an important main role in SriLankan Cuisine. Conjure up thoughts of this little island and you will find images of serene picturesque beaches, a warm climate, coconut trees, tropical fruits, and of course a vast array of Spices holding a mystery towards the secret of a delicious Sri Lankan Curry.

Spices also play an important part in the history of the Island. Written record shows spices that are native to Sri Lanka were traded with goods from Ancient Egypt around 2000 BC. The Island survived occupation from the Portuguese, Dutch and English, all ever too interested in the trade of spices that came from the region.

Sri Lankan cuisine is that little jewel that is yet to be discovered amongst the western palate. Though very much like Indian Cuisine, Sri Lankan food is known for being fiery hot. The mere Chili was only introduced to the Island from the Portaguese. Prior to this period most Asians relied on pepper to heat up their dishes. It is un-mistakable that influences from the Colonial Days certainly influence the vast array of dishes known as SriLankan cuisine.

In a previous article I spoke at length about the Crown Jewel- Cinnamon. Enticing the colonial nations to reap the profits of trade from this precious spice, the Portuguese set up Spice Factories on the Island at the beginning of the 16th Century. Cinnamon wasn’t the only profitable spice however. There was also Fenugreek, Cardamon and Cloves.

Cardamon has a strong and unique taste and is utilised for both sweet and savoury dishes. It is best known as the base flavouring for Chai Tea. Folklore states that cardamon is best used medicianally to break down kidney stones and gall stones. It is also still used to fight infections of the mouth.

Cloves are used ground or whole utilising its extremely aromatic scent and flavour. Just like Cardamon, Cloves are quintessentially Sri Lankan spices used to highlight both savoury and sweet dishes. Clove is a common ingredient used in incense. Medicinally clove oil is used to combat acne and skin conditions.

Fenugreek is a small brown seed that is used to produce a thickening effect in curries. It has a slightly pungent aroma and is used sparingly in all sorts or curries. Fenugreek seeds are almost always used in White Curries. More about white curries in my blog and future articles.

We have looked at three more spices that is used in Lankan cuisine. Cloves and Cardamon are great for sweet and savoury dishes (think about the great fragrence of Chai Tea), and Fenugreek (the thickening agent) used mainly in white milky curries. And lets not forget the chile- providing fiery heat to many dishes just the way the Lankan palate likes it.

As we treck on this journey of discovery on the delectable cuisine of SriLanka, we have been introfuced to a few staple spices. This week on your grocery run, purchase some of these spices and utilise them in your cooking. As we move along we can look at some traditional dishes that you will no doubt enjoy. Till then be merry and remember that the best dishes, are the ones that are cooked with love.


Street Talk

Simon K  

Awesome! Love your articles mate keep them coming! I am a huge fan of Sri Lankan food and culture. Your writing style is very nice. Cheers!,

Reply
  about 8 years ago

thank you Simon- Your support is appreciated. How are you familiar with Sri lankan food?

Reply
  about 8 years ago

Very interesting, as a chef I love spices especially spies from the east, great article.

Reply
  about 8 years ago

Thank you Stephen. I have also worked many years in hospitality (FOH Supervisor and Manager)- Alas not for Sri lankan Cuisine. What are you specialities as a chef?

Reply
  about 8 years ago

Any thing with fish, great all round chef, my weakness is probably pastry.

  
  about 8 years ago
Barbara9  

very nice article

Reply
  about 8 years ago

Thank you Barbara9 once again

Reply
  about 8 years ago
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