You know how when you eat an Indian meal, there are all of these pickles, chutneys and raitas on the table? Sri Lankans have similar side dishes at most meals too. Ones that will cut the richness of a creamy curry or cool a fiery one. Mallum, an herb and coconut salad of sorts, balances a plate with freshness, texture and not least of all, colour. It’s not the kind of dish that stands alone, in my opinion. When I have leftovers of only it, I enjoy the first mouthfuls (not that odd if you think about eating tabbouleh which is also predominantly chopped parsley) but that gets boring fast. Conversely there are meals I could not enjoy fully without mallum.
If you’re not making Sri Lankan or other South Asian food, mallum would be perfect on any rice bowl that includes gamey or earthy ingredients like lamb or mushrooms. It would be nice with saucy rice noodles, congee or other starchy and creamy food. It’s perfect with some dhal and roti.
This story and the recipe that goes with it can be found in “SRI LANKAN 101”, ISSUE 003 of Le Sauce Magazine! Please get it here: http://www.lesauce.com/app