"This is a curry that my Grandmother used to love. It’s full of goodness and really tasty. Deep frying peeled eggs gives it a tofu like exterior that absorbs the gravy." Peter Kuruvita, Peter Kuruvita's Coastal Kitchen
- 6 eggs (see Note)
- 200 ml coconut oil, for deep- frying
- 1 tbsp Maldive fish flakes, ground in a mortar and pestle (see Note)
- 3 cm piece cinnamon stick
- 3 cm piece pandanus leaf, available from Asian grocers
- 1 tsp cumin seeds, toasted
- ¼ tsp dill seeds
- 1 tsp chilli powder
- 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 2 small green chillies, finely chopped
- 1 sprig of curry leaves, leaves picked
- 350 ml coconut cream
- ½ tsp grated turmeric
- coriander leaves, to serve
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.
Bring a medium saucepan of water to the boil, then plunge the eggs into the water and boil for 5 minutes. Remove and refresh in iced water until cool. Carefully peel the cooked eggs, then prick them all over with a fork and lightly salt them. Set aside.
Heat the coconut oil in a medium saucepan or wok to 180˚C. A good way to test if the oil is hot enough to start cooking is to put a curry leaf in and it should ‘pop’.
While the oil is heating, combine all the remaining ingredients in a heavy-based saucepan and simmer over medium heat for 8 minutes or until the onions are soft and the sauce has thickened.
Deep-fry the eggs in the hot coconut oil for 1 minute or until golden, then drain on absorbent paper. Add all of the eggs to the curry sauce and simmer for 4- 5 minutes. Season to taste and garnish with coriander to serve.
• A tip for boiling eggs is to tap a small hole in the round end of the egg with a small knife. This will stop the eggs from cracking when you put them into boiling water.
• Maldive fish flakes are made from skip-jack tuna and are used sparingly in Sri Lankan cooking to thicken and add a unique smoky flavour.
Photography by Dan Freene. Food preparation by Peter Kuruvita/Cody Fahey.