The colonizing Portuguese launched cashews to Sri Lanka through Brazil within the sixteenth century. In the present day, the nuts are eaten in every thing from curries to desserts. This wealthy yellow curry, tailored from cooks Jerome La’Brooy and Nishad Jaya­wardena of Asylum restaurant, is greatest served as an accompaniment. It may be made gentle or spicy, relying in your hand with the chili powder and selection of curry powder. Soaking the cashews forward of time offers them a young, beanlike high quality within the completed dish.

Featured in: “How to Make Fish Rice Like Sri Lanka’s Great Home Cooks.”

Cashew Curry

Cashew Curry

The colonizing Portuguese launched cashews to Sri Lanka through Brazil within the sixteenth century.

Yield: serves 4-6


8 hours, 40 minutes


  • 10 12 oz. uncooked unsalted cashews (2 cups plus 2 Tbsp.)
  • 1 14 tsp. kosher salt, divided, plus extra to style
  • 3 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 giant pink onion, peeled and thinly sliced (2 cups)
  • 2 sprigs contemporary curry sprigs (about 16–20 leaves)
  • 1 tbsp. yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 tbsp. scorching or gentle curry powder
  • 1 tsp. floor turmeric or ¼ oz. finely grated contemporary turmeric root
  • 12 tsp. pink chile powder
  • 1 12 cups coconut milk
  • Lime wedges, for garnish


  1. To a big bowl, add the cashews, 1 teaspoon salt, and sufficient cool water to cowl by about 2 inches. Let soak for a minimum of 8 hours or in a single day. Drain and put aside.
  2. In a big pot, warmth the coconut oil over medium-high warmth, till shimmering. Add the onion and a pinch of salt and cook dinner, stirring often, till softened and translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the curry leaves and mustard seeds and cook dinner, stirring frequently, till the leaves turn out to be translucent and the mustard seeds start to darken and audibly pop, 3–4 minutes. Stir within the reserved cashews, the curry powder, turmeric, and chile powder, then instantly add the coconut milk and ¼ teaspoon salt. Decrease the warmth and produce the combination to a simmer, stirring to verify every thing is nicely mixed. Cowl the pan and cook dinner, checking often and including a little bit of water if the combination is simply too thick, 20–half-hour. Style and regulate the seasoning if crucial, garnish with lime wedges, and serve.

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