Hoppers, a Sri Lankan roadside snack are delicate sourdough crepes made with coconut milk and rice flour. Cooked in a high-sided spherical pan, the batter is swirled around during the cooking process making for lacey-crisp edges and a tender center. S.H. Fernando Jr., author of Rice & Curry says that they're a wonderful vehicle for scooping up saucy curries, or if you're a fan of all things eggy, feel free to crack an egg in the middle of one of these guys for a Sri Lankan breakfast of champions.
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This Coconut Custard Pudding from S.H. Fernando Jr.'s Rice & Curry is a tropical take on a caramel custard. Instead of cream or milk, this recipe calls for thick coconut milk, resulting in a rich custard full of caramelized coconut notes, accented with nutmeg and cardamom. A scattering of crushed cashews are sprinkled on just before serving to add a crunch to the creamy custard.
Perhaps the most unusual curry in S.H. Fernando Jr.'s guide to Sri Lankan cuisine, Rice & Curry, is made of an ingredient more often found in a bowl of mixed nuts than in a steamy pot of coconut milk and chiles. Cashew Nut Curry is a wonderfully rich vegetarian curry, with soft, fatty cashews floating in creamy coconut milk spiced with curry leaves, lemongrass, coriander, and just enough chile heat.
S.H. Fernando Jr., author of Rice & Curry, calls these Spicy Lentil Fritters an Asian take on falafel, and that's a spot-on call. Subbing out chickpeas for yellow split peas makes for fritters with a great bite and the chiles, onion, curry leaves, ginger, and fennel seeds give these guys beguiling flavor, one that will have you snacking on these little fritters until every last one is gone.
Chile plays a major roll in the cuisine of Sri Lanka. Powdered cayenne, and hot peppers both dried and fresh pop up in nearly every recipe in S.H. Fernando Jr.'s Rice & Curry. So it's only appropriate that we're kicking of a week of Sri Lankan home cooking with a chile-laden recipe for Deviled Shrimp.