Pol sambol is a traditional spicy condiment that is coconut-based. This can be served as a side with any meal with string hoppers, rice, or appam. This recipe is a vegan recipe.
This coconut sambol is rich in flavors and textures. With the creamy coconut, the spicy heat from the chilies, and the zing from the lime, and not to forget the flavor and texture added by shallots, This is a medley of ingredients giving a unique flavor profile and flavor explosion,
This is a vegan recipe. Traditional recipes include dried Maldives fish. This is skipped in this recipe. Even though it is skipped, the sambol still has an ultimate flavor that you will be tempted to make often.
The following ingredients are required to make this recipe
Coconut - Fresh grated coconut works great for this recipe. Frozen grated coconut is a great alternative. Thaw and use in this recipe.
Dried red chili - Tear the dried red chili into tiny pieces so grinding is easier.
Green chilies - A couple of fresh chopped green chilies add a flavor boost.
Lime juice - Adds a zing and balances the flavor.
Salt - Adds flavor
Shallots - Shallots are added to the traditional recipes. If you do not have them, use onions instead.
Our families back home, used to have a grinding stone where they made our traditional condiments similar to this pol sambol. This pol sambol is traditionally made with a grinding stone, but this could be made with a mortar and pestle too, and I used a mortar and pestle to make this. It works perfectly fine.
We make a similar version of coconut condiment aka Thengai Thogayal ( Thengai in Tamil means coconut) and is also traditionally made in a stone grinder. Though they are alike, flavor variations exist as we add different ingredients.
What to serve this with
This spicy coconut-based condiment can be had with string hoppers, breads (pol roti), gluten-free rice-based breads like appam, and can be served with rice. Basically, this can be served as a side for any meal from breakfast to dinner or as a dip for a snack. This pol sambol could also be used in a wide variety of recipes.
We loved having this with Pol Roti, a coconut based Sri Lankan flatbread and with rice. This sambol was a part of the vegan Sri Lankan meal that we had when we explored the cuisine of Sri Lanka. If you loved the sound of this symbol, try this Pol Roti, Vegan Lunumiris, and Pathola Maluwa.
This is best when it is fresh. If there is any leftover, store in the refrigerator for up to a day. Bring it to room temperature and then use. It will lose the flavor when microwaved for a longer time, or when cooked on a pan. Make sure to use 5-6 second bursts when microwaving.
Coconut - 1 cup
Dreid red chili - 3 to 4
green chili - 1
salt - 1/2 tsp
Lime juice - 2 tsp
Onion - 1/2cup
Add the torn red chilies, chopped green chili, and salt to a mortar and pestle. Crush until the texture is slightly coarse sprinkling the lime juice.
Add the coconut and continue the same process until everything is well blended.
Add the onions/shallots. Crush slightly.
Transfer to a serving bowl. Serve with rice, string hoppers, or appam.