Sri Lanka: Where it all started…

…January 2007 and I left my job to go to the teardrop island of Sri Lanka.

Having very little travel experience, and unsure of exactly what I wanted to achieve while there, I made a base for myself in Unawatuna, a gorgeous little beachside village on the south east coast, and volunteered as a teacher in a computer institute. Being over 5000km from the nearest person I knew, I started my journey a little timid, eating in tourist restaurants and cafes in the hope of meeting fellow travellers (which I did), rather than branching out into the wide world of traditional Sri Lankan eating. Within a week, however, I got into the swing of things – previously intimidating local cafes were intimidating no more, and I discovered a new dimension to holidays and travel.

It’s a coconut!

Sri Lanka gave me my first tastes of the following:

  1. Sri Lankan roti (stuffed flatbread)
  2. Fresh coconuts
  3. Vadai (deep-fried savoury lentil snack)
  4. Fresh-from-the-tree bananas, pineapples and papayas (but not mangoes – they were out of season)
  5. Banana-leaf-wrapped packed lunches
  6. Egg and string hoppers
  7. Arrack (liquor distilled from coconut sap)

Now, I probably can’t write too much about a pineapple cart (and “pineapple woman”) or coconuts sold on the beach by an elderly woman with a machete (“coconut woman”); however, I can talk about the roti, vadai, packed lunches and hoppers, and I definitely have some stories to tell about arrack.

So here begins my global streetbite journey… watch this space.

My Sri Lankan adoptive family (no, this is not a fish ‘n’ chip supper)



Filed under fare destination, Sri Lanka

4 Responses to Sri Lanka: Where it all started…

  1. It’s great that you were inspired by Sri Lanka. I’m looking forward to reading more about all these foreign foods I’ve never even heard of!

  2. Pingback: Keralan village cuisine: You can find it here! | global streetbite

  3. Pingback: Sri Lankan dhal with coconut sambol | global streetbite

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