Sri Lankan Curry with Coconut Sambal

2 hours
to cook

This is one of my favourite curries, made extra special by the use of fresh coconut, half of which goes into the curry and the rest used to make the sambal.

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A picture of Delia's Summer Collection

This recipe is from Delia's Summer Collection. Serves 4

  • method
  • Ingredients


First, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large casserole, then add the onions and garlic and cook gently to soften for 5 minutes.

Next, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in a frying pan and, when it's nice and hot, quickly brown the cubes of meat (you will have to do this in two batches). Then sprinkle the flour and curry powder over the onions in the casserole and stir to soak up the juice, then cook gently for 2 minutes. Now pour the coconut milk into a measuring jug and make up to 1¼ pints (725 ml) with stock and slowly pour this into the casserole, stirring all the time.

Next, stir in the grated fresh and creamed coconut and transfer the browned meat to the casserole. Finally, add the spices and season with salt and pepper. Bring up to simmering point, cover and cook in the centre of the oven or on a low simmer on top of the stove for 2 hours.

To make the coconut sambal, quite simply grate the coconut and the onion straight into a bowl, then sprinkle in the chilli powder, the lemon or lime juice and the salt.

Stir to get everything nicely blended, then sprinkle just a tiny dusting of chilli powder over the top, cover and chill slightly until needed. Five minutes before the end of the curry's cooking time, remove the cinnamon stick and stir the hard-boiled eggs and onion pieces into the curry to warm through (the onions are not meant to be cooked).

Serve with the coconut sambal and Spiced Pilau Rice with Nuts.

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