If you want to relish the luscious cuisine of Sri Lanka which is packed with spectacular flavours, you needn’t yet look for your passport. Head to The Leela Mumbai for lunch or dinner on any day till 8th September and chow down on authentic dishes of the country. In a collaboration with Chef Publis Silva of the Mount Lavinia Hotel and Chef Sunanda Kumar of the Cinnamon Lodge Habarana, this food festival brings out the best from the gorgeous island presented to you in a lavish buffet.
Live Station And Salads
We visited the restaurant Citrus at The Leela Mumbai to savour the dishes curated by Chef Publis and Chef Sunanda. We loved the array of delicacies and choice being offered with regards to Sri Lankan specialties. Starting off on a light note, we took a helping of the Dhal Chicken Soup which had comforting flavours and seemed to be coming straight out of a mother’s kitchen. Next we were served the popular dishes from the island country – Kothu Parotta and Egg Hoppers.
The two famed dishes were being made to order on a live station at the Citrus. The parotta was made with egg, chicken, onion, tomatoes and parotta tossed together with a variety of spices. One can feel the essence of the South Indian flavours in this dish and once it was served we instantly mopped it up. Coming to the hoppers, a sunny side up on appam is a big yes from all egg lovers. Do not miss this or the egg hoppers as both dishes are exquisite and delicious.
As for the salads, we tried them all and our favourites were – Chickpeas Sundal, Chicken Salad, Sri Lankan Pork Salad and Sri Lankan Cucumber & Coconut Salad. Each one of them had spectacular flavours. We recommend that you taste them all and then take your pick. The chickpea sundal though looked humble, was packed with spicy flavours; the chicken in the chicken salad was juicy and delectable, the pork salad was an absolute win with the crunch of the carrots and onions along with sumptuous pork chunks; and last but not the least, the cucumber salad that shined through with its lovely vinaigrette.
Mains And Desserts
We tried most of the mains, condiments and desserts during our visit to the Sri Lankan food festival at The Leela Mumbai and found each dish unique and full of flavour. Our favourite, hands down was the Mutton Curry with the meat falling off the bone, sumptuous taste and absolutely heavenly. Second best but no less in flavours was the Chicken Theeyal and as intense as it gets, the third favourite was the Cuttle Fish Devilled. The fish though was enjoyed by us does have intense flavours and the taste might take some getting used to for those who like their food with simpler flavours.
The condiments, sweet, spicy, tangy, need to be given a special mention here as they enhanced the flavour of the food we were eating. These are native to Sri Lanka and we tried them all – Lunumiris (Chilli with Onion), Onion Sambol, Mango Sweet Pickle, Coconut Sambol and Brinjal Chilli Sambol. Mix them up with the rice and the main you’ve chosen and get ready for a delish, spicy punch.
Last but not the lease we tried the traditional desserts, most of which were made with organic dark jaggery. We highly recommend the pudding made using this jaggery. After ending on a sweet note, we came out of the culinary journey of Sri Lanka. During the experience we also met Chef Publis who greeted us with a Namaste and presented us with spectacular food from his land. Do not miss out on this lovely experience at The Leela Mumbai.