With emotions still raw from the war, I was a little nervous when I arrived at the 233 Brigade in Vakarai to stay with the Sri Lankan Army. However, like most Sri Lankans, the soldiers were incredibly warm and welcoming and we had a lot of fun cooking this cashew curry in their mess kitchen. It was a unique experience and at times felt quite surreal, but I loved it and would go back in a heartbeat!
Drain the soaked cashews, then place in a wok or heavy-based saucepan with the turmeric, thuna paha, chilli powder, pepper, salt, rampe, garlic and half the sliced onion. Add the coconut milk and stir to combine. Bring to the boil, then cover, reduce the heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the cashews are tender.
Stir in the coconut cream, check for seasoning, then add salt to taste. Add the chillies, curry leaves, the rest of the onion and the extra pepper. Simmer for a further 2 minutes, uncovered, then remove from the heat. Serve with a main curry and rice.
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