A traditional Sri Lankan carb accompaniment instead of or in addition to rice, pol roti is incredibly quick and easy to prepare. Absorbing the rich spicy ‘gravy’ of the countless array of curries & sambols, the simplest way to describe this is Sri Lanka’s version of naan bread.
In Sri Lanka, it’s most often enjoyed at breakfast with a side of spicy lunu mirris; a fiery sambol made with chilli, onion and an optional pinch of maldive fish.
My favourite pol roti recipe belongs to Jetwing, a local chain of community conscious hotels & villas across the country.
The below recipe takes just 15-20 minutes and makes 6-8 rottis. It can be prepared in advance (on the same day) or cooked before serving for the freshest result.
2 cups of plain flour
1 cup fresh grated coconut (dessicated coconut is fine if more convinient)
1 onion sliced
1-2 green chilli sliced
1 sprig of curry leaves chopped (fresh curry leaves are available in specialist supermarkets, otherwise use dried or frozen from fresh)
2 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp salt
1⁄2 cup water
1 cup coconut water
In a bowl rub butter into the flour, grated coconut, onions, green chillies and curry leaves.
Add coconut water then gradually add water (if needed) to make a non sticky dough. Make small balls from the dough.
Spread a little flour on a flat surface and flatten each small ball of dough to a round flat rotti shape. Use a cutter if you wish to sharpen the edges.
Cook on a grill until the outer surface is hard and golden. The inside should be soft.
- When cooking roti as a snack I use 2 chillis, as an accompaniment to a spicy curry just 1.
- Cook on a medium heat to begin, then blast on high to crisp the edges.