Peter Kuruvita's recipe for this popular Sri Lankan curry stars the cashew nut. It is a fragrant and flavoursome meat-free meal that would be perfect to serve to vegetarian guests at a dinner party, or as part of a banquet.






Skill level

Average: 3.3 (136 votes)


  • 250 g cashew nuts
  • 2 tbsp ghee
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 1 sprig curry leaves
  • 2 green chillies, chopped
  • 10 cm piece pandan leaf
  • ½ tsp roasted cumin seeds, ground
  • ½ tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp chilli powder
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 300 ml coconut milk
  • 150 ml coconut cream
  • pinch of roasted curry powder

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Soaking time 1 hour

Soak the cashew nuts in a small bowl of water for 1 hour. Drain and set aside.

Meanwhile, heat the ghee in a medium pan over high heat. Once hot, add the onions, curry leaves, chilli and pandan, and stir.

Once the onions are fragrant and begin to change colour, add the cumin, turmeric, chilli powder and the cinnamon stick. Stir over medium heat until spices are lightly roasted.

Add the drained cashew nuts and stir to combine.

Add the coconut milk and boil until the sauce has thickened and reduced.

Stir in the coconut cream, bring to the boil and remove from heat. Season to taste.

Pour into a bowl to serve and top with a little extra coconut cream and some roasted curry powder.