Sothi

Sothi is a typical Sri Lankan curry which my mother thought me last night. This is a simple oil-free vegan yellow coconut curry which resembles the Malay “Masak Lemak” dish. You could cook any vegetables using this recipe. In this we used regular green cabbage. Unfortunately I did not take down the Malay “Masak Lemak” recipes from Kakak Is. She prepared banana blossoms (jantung pisang) and yellow burr head (genjer) which is very delicious. I am guessing the Malay version has lemongrass, pandan and galangal but I can’t say for  sure. Both versions are very similar none the less.

Ingredients

  • 3 red chillies chopped
  • Medium red onion chopped
  • 1 spring of curry leaves
  • ½ teaspoon of fenugreek
  • 2 cloves of garlic chopped
  • 4 leaves of cabbage chopped
  • ½ teaspoon of turmeric
  • 14oz can of coconut milk
  • 2 fresh tomatoes chopped
  • 1 fresh lime sliced in half
  • Salt to taste

Instructions

  1. Add chillies, onions, curry leaves, cabbage, fenugreek, garlic, cabbage and turmeric to pot and fill with enough water to cover vegetables. The amount of water depends on how you like it. I like a thick sauce and so I used less water which did not cover all the vegetables.
  2. Bring water to a gentle boil.
  3. Once the cabbage is half or more cooked add coconut milk
  4. Do not boil coconut milk as it will release the oils. Stir gently over a very gentle simmer.
  5. Once all vegetables are cooked add tomatoes, salt and squeeze lime to taste and remove from heat immediately as you do not want to cook the tomatoes nor overcook the vegetables.
  6. If the dish is too tangy, counteract with a bit of brown sugar.

 

Laks Indrakaran

Virginia Beach, US

Kale Varai

Varai is one of several typical Sri Lankan dishes that my mother has mastered during her time in America. I was thought to make a simple Kale Varai but I am guessing one could use any green leafy vegetable in stead of Kale. Kale is one my favourites and this is so far the most delicious way to prepare Kale in my opinion.

Ingredients

  • 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 4 green chillies or dried chillies chopped
  • Medium red onion
  • 1 spring of curry leaves
  • 2 cloves of garlic chopped
  • 12 large leaves of kale stemmed and chopped
  • ½ teaspoon of turmeric or less (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons of desiccated coconut

Instructions

  1. Add a bit of oil (I would just splash a bit of water) on heated pan.
  2. Add mustard seeds once pan is hot.
  3. As soon as mustard seeds pop, add onions, garlic and chillies.
  4. When onions are translucent add Kale.
  5. Splash more water to keep Kale from sticking to pan. Not too much as this is a dry dish.
  6. Cover and cook on medium-low
  7. Once Kale reduces and begins to wilt, add turmeric and desiccated coconut.
  8. Stir gently until Kale is cooked but be careful not to over cook
  9. Remove and serve.

Laks Indrakaran

Virginia Beach, US