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Thread: SriLankan Ramadan Recipes

  1. #1
    What is Ramadan and Eid-ul-Fitr?
    Ramadan is the 9th and the most sacred month in the Islamic calendar. On the 29th day of Sha'ban - the 8th month in the Islamic calendar, the western horizon is scanned for the new moon. Upon sighting the new crescent, immediately after the sunset, Ramadan begins, though fasting begins with the next dawn. If the moon is not sighted on the 29th day, then 30 days of Sha'ban is completed and Ramadan begins the next day.

    Eid-ul-Fitr or Ramadan festival marks the end of the month, Ramadan.

    What is the Significance of Ramadan?
    In this religious month, Muslims engage in prayers and charity. The most significant feature here though is the fasting undertaken during daytime. This restraint helps the devotees to:
    1- Appreciate and to be thankful for one's life's simple pleasures such as eating and drinking, which will not be valued if one can indulge all the time
    2-Learn self-control, as one cannot eat or drink however hungry until the prescribed time. This exercise thus teach one to avoid temptation and wrongdoing
    3- Feel compassion and empathy for the poor and hungry, which will prompt one to help those in need
    4- Develop an attitude of humbleness towards this world and its desires, thereby being able to engage more in worship and spiritual advancement

    The Special Food during Ramadan
    When it is time to break fast, the first thing eaten is dates, in imitation of what the Prophet did.

    For breaking fast, the special foods include:
    1- Kanji or Congee Surtapam - rolled pancakes with panipol
    2-Pillawoos - crunchy, deep-fried banana batter, drizzled with treacle
    3- Ada - soft, juggery cakes
    4- Addukku Roti - layers of pancakes with a minced beef or chicken filling, baked in a pastry covering
    5-Pastol - rice flour and coconut patty with tripe filling
    6- Al-basara - shredded beef or chicken with semolina, baked like a cake The special drinks include:
    7- Sherbet - rose syrup mixed in milk with poppy seeds floating on top
    8-Almond Milk - a milky drink made out of almonds

  2. #2
    Ramadan Festive Food

    Rice Kanji
    Rice kanji (or congee) is a staple of Ramadan. This is made everyday for breaking the fast - usually not plain, but with beef or chicken added.
    1. ¾ tin red rice
    2. 3 - 4 pods garlic
    3. 1 ½" cinnamon stick
    4. ½" ginger root, chopped
    5. ¼ tsp dill seeds
    6. 5 - 7 curry leaves
    7. 2" pandan leaf
    8. 3 cups water
    9. 2 cups thick coconut milk
    10. Salt to taste
    Serves 6
    1. Boil rice, garlic, cinnamon, ginger, dill seeds, curry leaves and pandan leaf with 3 cups of water.
    2. When rice is boiled, mash it with a wooden spoon.
    3. Add the coconut milk and salt and bring to boil again. If too thick, then add a little diluted coconut milk. Remove from fire before kanji over-boils.
    Note: 1 Tin is a general measure used by Sri Lankans. This holds 250 g of grain.


    Mutton Biriyani
    This fragrant, colourful rice is almost a meal in itself.
    For rice:
    1. 1 ¼ kg Basmati or Suduru Samba rice
    2. 10" pandan leaf
    3. 5" cinnamon stick
    4. 2 tsp salt
    5. 225 g cashew
    6. 100 g ghee
    7. 350 g big onions, sliced
    8. 2 tbsp coriander leaves, chopped
    9. 4 - 5 strands of saffron
    10.5 - 6 drops of rose essence
    11.5 - 6 hard-boiled eggs
    12. ½ cup milk

    *For spice powder:
    1. 20 cardamoms
    2. 10 cloves
    3. 5" cinnamon
    4. ½ nutmeg

    For mutton curry:
    1. 1 kg mutton with bones, cubed roughly 2"x2"
    2. 500 g tomatoes chopped
    3. 500 g curd
    4. 2 tsp salt
    5. Red, yellow and green food colouring
    6. 100 g ghee
    7. 100 g big onions, sliced
    8. 1 ½" ginger root, chopped
    9. 10 pods of garlic
    10. 30 mint leaves
    11. 16 green chili
    12. ½ tsp turmeric powder
    13. ½ cup coconut, grated and roasted golden brown
    14. 1 - 2 tsp chili powder
    15. 2 tsp spice powder*
    16. 2 tbsp coriander leaves
    Serves 12 - 14

    Spice Powder:
    1. Heat a dry pan and add all the ingredients.
    2. Swirl the spices until warm and fragrant.
    3. Grind into a fine powder.
    Mutton curry:
    1. In a clean bowl mix mutton cubes, tomatoes, curd and salt. Leave in the refrigerator for 2 - 3 hours.
    2. Grind ginger, garlic, mint and green chili into a fine paste.
    3. Heat ghee in a large, heavy-bottom saucepan and fry the onions till golden.
    4. Add the ground paste, roasted coconut, turmeric and chili powder. Fry for a couple of minutes until fragrant.
    5. Add the marinated mutton and cook until the mutton is ¾ done.
    6. Remove from fire.
    7. Sprinkle with spice powder and the coriander leaves.
    1. Wash the rice and put it into a large saucepan. Add the pandan leaf and the cinnamon stick.
    2. Add hot water to the rice. The water level must be 1" above the level of the rice. Bring to boil. When the rice is ¾ cooked, drain away the excess water.
    3. Spread rice on a large, flat tray or plate and leave to cool.
    4. Sprinkle with salt.
    5. Sprinkle a few drops of coloring onto the rice. Using gloved fingers, mix the rice until there are red, yellow and green rice grains among the white rice grains.
    6. Heat the ghee and fry the cashews. As soon as the cashews start turning golden, remove from fire and leave on top of a kitchen paper-towel to drain excess oil.
    7. In the remaining fat, fry the onions until golden brown and set aside on a kitchen paper-towel.
    Assembling the Biriyani:
    1. Pour the mutton curry into a large, oven-proof glass bowl or container.
    2. Sprinkle half the fried cashews and quarter of the fried onions over the mutton curry.
    3. Spread half the rice on top of the mutton curry.
    4. Sprinkle the remaining fried cashews, onions and the coriander leaves.
    5. Spread the remaining rice on top. Pour the milk on top of the rice.
    6. Heat a pan and lightly warm the saffron strands. Crush the strands with gloved fingers. Add ½ cup warm water to it. Mix rose essence with ¼ cup water.
    7. Sprinkle the saffron mixture and the rose essence water over the rice.
    8. Nicely arrange the hard-boiled eggs on top.
    9. Make a stiff dough with flour and water. Roll into a thick slab.
    10. Cover the rice dish with this slab, ensuring no steam escapes.
    11. Place the iron griddle under the rice dish, so that it does not get too hot. Cook over high heat for 5 - 7 minutes, reduce heat and cook over low heat 40 - 60 minutes.
      Serve hot.


    Fried Chicken
    This is a typical accompaniment to the mutton biriyani during the Eid-ul-Fitr festival.
    1. 1 whole chicken
    2. 3 tbsp tamarind
    3. ¼ tsp turmeric powder
    4. 1 tbsp chili powder
    5. 1 tbsp freshly ground black pepper

    6. Oil for frying Serves 4 - 6
    1. Mix chicken with all ingredients and par-boil.
    2. Heat the oil and deep fry.


    This is a pancake with grated coconut and juggery (palm sugar).
    1. 1 tin flour
    2. 2 cups thick coconut milk
    3. Pinch of salt
    4. 1 egg
    5. 200 g grated juggery
    6. ½ cup water
    7. 1 cup grated fresh coconut*
    8. 3 - 4 bruised cardomoms
    1. Mix flour, milk, salt and egg into a batter.
    2. Put juggery into a pan and add water. Bring to boil over medium heat, stirring continuously, until juggery melts. Take care as juggery burns easily.
    3. When thick, add grated coconut and cardamom into the melted juggery.
    4. Heat and brush a griddle with butter. Pour a ladle of batter and bake a pancake.
    5. Remove from griddle, add a teaspoon of coconut-juggery mixture and roll the pancake.
    Note: 1 Tin is a general measure used by Sri Lankans. This holds 250 g of grain.
    *Chef’s tip:
    If fresh grated coconut cannot be found, lightly roast desiccated coconut.

  3. #3
    Green Peas & Cashew Curry
    This is a typical accompaniment to the mutton biriyani during the Eid-ul-Fitr festival.
    1. 1 tbsp ghee
    2. 4 - 5 cardamoms, bruised
    3. 100 g green peas (if frozen, then defrosted)
    4. 2 carrots, cubed
    5. 1 big onion, sliced
    6. 1 tomato, diced
    7. 500 g cashew
    8. 1 tsp ginger, ground
    9. 1 tsp garlic, ground
    10. ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
    11. ¼ tsp turmeric powder
    12. 1 cup water
    13. Salt to taste
    14. ¼ cup thick coconut milk Serves 4 - 6
    1. Heat ghee and temper the cardamoms.
    2. Add carrots, onion, tomato, cashew, ginger and garlic. Add pepper, turmeric and water. Add salt.
    3. When all the water has evaporated, add the green peas and coconut milk. Simmer and remove from fire.

    Though this is an Indian dish, this is a typical accompaniment to the mutton biriyani during the Eid-ul-Fitr festival.
    1. ½ cup curd
    2. 3 - 4 green chili, chopped
    3. 4 - 5 red onions, sliced
    4. ½ small cucumber, thinly sliced
    5. 1 tsp salt
    6. 1 tsp pepper
    1. Beat the curd until smooth.
    2. Add green chili, red onions and cucumber into the curd.
    3. Season with salt and pepper and refrigerate until needed.

    Malay Pickle
    This is a typical accompaniment to the mutton biriyani during the Eid-ul-Fitr festival.
    For pickle syrup:
    1. 250 L vinegar
    2. 500 g sugar
    3. 4 - 5 cloves
    4. 5 - 6 cardamoms
    5. 2" cinnamon stick
    6. 2 tbsp chili powder
    7. 1 tbsp ginger, ground
    8. 1 tbsp garlic, ground
    9. ¼ tsp turmeric powder

    For pickle:
    1. 500 g dates
    2. 250 g sun-dried lime in salt, quartered
    3. 10 - 15 billing, salted
    4. 1 mango, salted and cubed Pickle syrup
    1. Boil vinegar with sugar, cloves, cardamoms and cinnamon.
    2. When boiling, add the remaining ingredients and remove from fire,
    3. Mix well.
    1. Add all the ingredients into the pickle syrup and store in air-tight glass jars. This can be kept for 3 months.


    Mint Sambol
    This is a typical accompaniment to the mutton biriyani during the Eid-ul-Fitr festival.
    1. 30 - 40 mint leaves
    2. 10 - 12 green chilies
    3. 2 tsp sugar
    4. ½ freshly grated coconut
    5. 3 cloves garlic
    6. ½" ginger
    7. 3 red onions
    8. Lime and salt to taste Serves 8 - 10
    1. Grind all to a fine paste.


  4. #4
    Maldive Fish Sambol
    This is a typical accompaniment to the mutton biriyani during the Eid-ul-Fitr festival.
    1. 150 g Maldive Fish, chopped into small pieces
    2. 20 - 25 red onions, finely sliced
    3. Oil for deep frying
    4. 1 tbsp, chili powder
    5. 1 tsp salt
    6. 1 lime
    1. Deep fry the Maldive fish. Drain on kitchen paper.
    2. Deep fry onions in batches. Remove from oil as the onion turns golden or it will burn. Drain on kitchen paper.
    3. Mix the fried ingredients and then add the rest of the ingredients. Taste and adjust chili, salt and lime accordingly.


    This is the typical dessert during the Eid-ul-Fitr festival.

    1. 350 g jaggery (palm sugar), grated
    2. 2 tbsp water
    3. 250 ml thick coconut milk
    4. 8 eggs
    5. 4 tbsp sugar
    6. ½ salt
    7. ½ tsp nutmeg
    8. ¼ tsp cardamom seeds, powdered
    9. 1 tsp vanilla
    10. ½ cup cashew, sliced Serves 6 - 8
    1. Heat jaggery with 2 tbsp water.
    2. Beat eggs with sugar and salt. Add the melted jaggery, coconut milk and beat well.
    3. Strain into a bowl.
    4. Add nutmeg, cardamom and vanilla.
    5. Cover the bowl and steam in simmering water for 30 - 40 minutes. Sprinkle the cashews halfway and continue to steam until set.


    Popularly called falluda, is a rose-flavored milk that is very refreshing to the thirsty tongue.
    For rose syrup:
    1. 3 ½ kg sugar
    2. 1 ½ L water
    3. 2 limes
    4. Rose essence to taste
    5. Red food colouring

    For sherbet:
    1. 1 glass chilled milk
    2. Rose syrup to taste
    3. Poppy seeds
    4. Water Rose syrup:
    1. Bring water and sugar to boiling point. When boiling, add lime.
    2. Remove from fire when syrup is thick.
    3. Leave to cool. Add rose essence and coloring.
    Note: This can be kept for a couple of months in a cool, dry place. Sherbet:
    1. Soak poppy seeds in a jar of water overnight.
    2. Add about ¼ glass rose essence (varies according to preference of taste) to chilled milk and mix well.
    3. Strain the poppy seeds and add on top.
    Chef’s tip: You may add tiny cubed red and green jelly for a festive look and complete it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.


    Almond Milk
    1. 1 kg condensed milk
    2. Sugar to taste
    3. 1 L boiled, cooled water
    4. 100 g almonds, ground (or ground cashew and ½ tsp almond essence)
    1. Mix milk, sugar and water and stir until sugar dissolves.
    2. Add almonds and chill.

  5. #5
    Could I have the recipe for Pastol please? I remember buying it in Malay Street, Colombo.

    Thanks and best regards.


  6. #6
    i really dont know its recipe..even i have never tasted it...

    try google or yahoo...may be you will find it there..

  7. #7
    Thanks for the nice recipes rahen

  8. #8

  9. #9
    Handi Kebab Recipe

    1/2 kg beef or mutton, cubed
    1 tsp ginger paste
    1 tsp garlic paste
    3 tbsp onion paste
    3 tbsp raw papaya paste
    1 tsp white pepper
    1 tsp roasted coriander seeds, crushed
    1 tsp all spice powder
    ½ tsp chilli powder
    Juice of one lemon
    Salt to taste
    2 medium-sized onions, chopped for frying
    3-4 tbsp oil
    Chopped mint and coriander leaves for garnishing
    Mix all the ingredients, except the onion and oil.
    Set aside to marinate for a few hours or overnight.
    Heat oil in a deep pan and fry the onions till golden.
    Add the meat and one cup water and cook till done.
    To serve, garnish with mint and coriander leaves.

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