Sri Lankan pol sambol is a shredded coconut garnish that includes just a few simple ingredients mixed together into perfect harmony. Sri Lankan pol sambol should be a little bit spicy, sour (but not overpowering) from the lime juice, and salty to suit your own taste. Enjoy pol sambol along with roti paratha bread or as a side, with a rice and curry dish. Pol sambol is delicious simply scooped up with little bites of bread.
300 grams of fresh shredded coconut (mature, firm coconut that’s used to make coconut milk, not the young soft coconuts)
around 2–4 spoons of chili powder
around ½ spoon of salt
5–10 cloves of raw garlic
1–2 small red onion
Note: These are just suggested amounts, you may need more or less of any of the ingredients. Start off using less and do a lot of taste testing until it tastes right to you. You are the judge. The key ingredient is the shredded coconut. Put all the ingredients in a bowl and mix… that’s about it!
1. Shred the coconut, mince the garlic, mince the onion and toss it all into a mixing bowl.
2. Add salt and chili powder, and finally squeeze in the juice from 1 lime first (more later).
3. Start mixing the pol sambol with the tips of your fingers; work it like you’re massaging someone’s shoulders. Begin to twist and lightly squeeze until all ingredients are equally coating the coconut. At this point the pol sambol should be orange in color.
4. Taste it. Add more salt, chili, or lime juice to taste.