Jaffna – Home cooking with Vinesh’s mother-in-law

For quite some time now the internet has been abuzz with tales of Jaffna being a place with unique culinary experiences, full of sumptuous local cuisine that are a highlight while visiting Sri Lanka.  We can tell you that it’s true!

Though finding authentic Jaffna cooking outside of high-end restaurants is not an easy task and it is actually best experienced in a home. We’re very lucky that one of our Tour Executives, Vinesh, from Jaffna, has a mother-in-law who is renown for making the best signature dish of Sri Lankan Crab curry – truly a succulent & mouth-watering treat.

True foodies are not only able to indulge in delicious home cooking, they are also able to spend time with Vinesh’s mother-in-law (pictured) learning how to make the famous dish as well as many regional accompaniments such as brinjal paal curry, a Tamil influenced dish of eggplant.  Help grind the coconut and create an amazing rich & deep paste that you’ll be wanting to replicate back home.  We invite guests to make a morning of it and join for a walk around the local markets for fresh produce and also visiting a fish market to check out this morning’s catch.  Learn about the variety of seafood, vegetables, herbs and spices (many that you may not be familiar with) and feel free to choose any that take your fancy to prepare for today’s lunch. It’s also great to indulge in some of the local brew, coconut arrack.

We believe there’s no better way to connect with locals than through food and this culinary experience certainly reflects the warmth and hospitality of down-to-earth & welcoming Jaffna.

Jaffna itself has long been considered off the beaten track and can easily be reached at the beginning of your journey by taking a domestic flight from Colombo Ratmalana airport (only available on Monday, Wednesday and Friday).

Aside from the food, Jaffna has a lot to offer and is steeped in Hindu tradition, art & culture.  The Jaffna Fort, in Guru Nagar, is handy to the main fish market, and is an imposing site built by the Portuguese after their invasion in 1618 (they first invaded in 1560) and is just as impressive as the Galle Fort in the South, only far few visitors!  We’d also recommend a day trip to the intriguing island of Neduntivu (popularly known as Delft) and there’s no better way to do this than by getting your own private fishing boat to have the flexibility to go around the various islands, including Nainativu, home to the Hindu shrine of the Nagapooshani Amman Temple.

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