Tuesday, April 03, 2012

I asked our tuk tuk driver, Batu (the fellow in the picture) for a Sri Lankan cooking lesson and he arranged for us to go to another driver's house and his wife cooked a lovely curry for us.  There was dahl and curried lady fingers ( a Sri Lankan vegetable) and a fish stew.  It was a wonderful meal and a lovely evening in the home of someone who lives here.  
These are the lady fingers.

The cook produced all this food on a two burner propane stove. Her other method of cooking is on a open hearth with a small fireplace. The frying pan is sitting over where the fire is and you can glimpse the firewood underneath the hearth.  I tried to have the tuk tuk drivers on board for lunch today, to return their hospitality, but I guess it wasn't meant to be.  We are in a military harbour and we have to show our pass and go through a gate each time we leave the compound. In order to have the guys on board we had to get them a pass.  Barry went off this morning to complete the paper work and I stayed on board and cooked up spaghetti, a lettuce salad and a wonderful fruit salad for dessert. The paper work was almost done when they decided since the president of Sri Lanka was coming today to open a new fish factory close by that they would not allow any guests in the harbour.  I was sitting on board, all the lunch was ready, but no guests!  Then we were told we had to move again because the presidential helicopters were going to land very near the boat and we would have been too close. 

Sri Lankan president on board
Gun boat patrolling the harbour while President was in the area. 
In Sri Lanka the norm when you go out to eat are rice and curry, or if you really felt adventurous you could have curry and rice. The other things you can eat are roti, which is an Indian version of bread.  It is a flat bread that is cooked in a big circle and then folded into a triangle and things are put inside.  You can have ones with egg in them or curried vegetables, which is very popular for breakfast.  The long skinny thing on the plate is a fish curry thing with a coating that is fried.  The drink is the ever popular (at least in my book) GINGER BEER! It is the best even better than the Bundaberg variety because it is more gingery.    
This guy is mixing up a huge batch of roti.

Last week we went to visit the fort that was built by the Dutch back in the 1700.  The Portuguese were here first and then the Dutch came in.  I think they were the ones that built this fort, they certainly knew how to make fortifications.  I don't think the lighthouse was built that long ago but the church is quite old as well.  

Look at the big stone wall, it goes all the way around the fort.  

I just love this picture,  I think it is good enough to be a post card.