This dish is a tasty jumbled heap of shredded bread, crispy vegetables, and egg, seasoned with a fiery mix of spices. It’s a perfect way to use up old rotis and any veg that might have overstayed its welcome in the bottom of the fridge.
Part roadside spectacle, part musical entertainment, in Sri Lanka the chefs use huge, noisy metal blades to rhythmically chop and mix everything until it comes together in one democratic and harmonious ensemble. You don’t need a metallic orchestra for this recipe, however: a frying pan, sharp knife, and some enthusiasm will do.
NOTE: You will need a blender for this recipe.
Serves 2 as a main course
½ x 14-ounce can of plum tomatoes
4 cloves of garlic
1¾-inch piece of ginger, peeled
1½ Indian green chiles
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 red onion, sliced
1 teaspoon cumin seeds, crushed
2 tablespoons soy sauce
½ a red cabbage (11–12 ounces), finely shredded
2 large carrots (11–12 ounces), peeled and cut into matchsticks
3 flatbreads or paratha, shredded into ¼-inch ribbons
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon salt
4 scallions, finely sliced
a handful of cilantro, chopped
Put the tomatoes, garlic, ginger, and green chiles into a blender and pulse to a paste.
Warm the oil in a frying pan over medium heat and, when hot, add the red onion. Cook for 10 minutes, or until golden and soft, then add the blended tomato paste. Cook for around 5 minutes, then add the cumin seeds and soy sauce. Stir to mix, and add the cabbage and carrots.
Cook for 6 minutes, or until the cabbage and carrots soften but still have a good crunch, then add the shredded flatbreads. Fold into the pan using a wooden spoon and cook for 4 minutes, then add the eggs and salt. Toss the mixture for a couple of minutes, until the egg is cooked, then take off the heat.
Transfer to a serving plate or divide between dinner plates, and sprinkle the scallions and cilantro over the top.