Prep Time: 15 Minutes
Cook Time: 30 Minutes
Ready In: 45 Minutes
Servings: 6




"This dish is prepared almost daily in any Sri Lankan household. It is one of the most popular preparations that accompany rice and curry. It goes equally well with string hoppers, hoppers and rotti." 

INGREDIENTS:

2 cups red lentils
2 ½ cups water
2 cups scraped, fresh coconut
1 dried red chilli broken into pieces
2 teaspoons Maldive fish
1 teaspoon ground tumeric
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
6 curry leaves
2 medium onions, finely sliced
2 inch strip rampe (optional)
2 inch strip stick of cinnamon
Small stalk of lemon grass or strip of lemon rind
Salt to taste

DIRECTIONS:
 
1.  Wash lentils well until water is clean. Remove and discard lentils that float on the surface of the water or any that are discoloured and drain.

2.  Take 1 cup of water, add the scraped coconut and mix well (with hands). Squeeze coconut so that the coconut milk gets dissolved in the water. Strain the milk and set aside. This is the thick coconut milk.
 
3. Take the coconut after the straining and add the remaining water. Mix well and strain the milk again. This is the thin coconut milk.

4. Put drained lentils in a saucepan with the thin coconut milk, chilli, Maldive fish and turmeric. Bring to the boil, then cover and cook slowly for 10 minutes or until lentils are soft.

5. In another saucepan, heat the oil and fry the curry leaves, half the onions, rampe leaf, cinnamon and lemon grass until onions are brown.

6. Reserve half the onions for garnishing the dish and turn the lentil mixture into the saucepan. Add thick coconut milk and salt to taste, and simmer uncovered for about 5 minutes until lentils are very soft and has a consistency of runny porridge.

7. Garnish with balance onions and serve with rice and curries.

If fresh coconut is not available, omit steps 2 and 3, omit the coconut milk in steps 4 and 6 and add 2 cups of water in step 4 instead of coconut milk. 





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    I have taken to cooking "big time" since the middle of 2007, having dabbled in food preparation for at least 15 years previously.  
       
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