3 Sri-Lankan Veganuary Recipes from The Coconut Tree

By Ellie Smith

5 months ago

Hearty, plant-based curries and dhals to try this month

Trying your hand at Veganuary this year? Spice up your month by giving these flavoursome recipes a go, created by Sri Lankan restaurant group The Coconut Tree. Founded in 2016 by a group of Sri Lankan friends, The Coconut Tree has branches dotted around the UK in places like Cheltenham, Oxford and Bristol, and 70 per cent of the menu is vegan. Co-founder Rodrigo said: ‘The dishes are all authentic to my home and culture, served exactly as they would be in Sri Lanka. We want our vegan customers to know that they’re getting an equally genuine Sri Lankan experience when they visit us, and we hope that the effort we put into our vegan dishes demonstrates that.’

3 Sri-Lankan Vegan Recipes from The Coconut Tree

Fat Sister (Pumpkin Curry)

Pumpkin curry by The Coconut Tree                                         

Serves 4   


  • 50ml coconut oil  
  • 3 tablespoons mild curry powder  
  • 2 cloves  
  • 2 cardamom pods  
  • 1/2 teaspoon fennel  
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin  
  • 1 teaspoon fenugreek  
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon  
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric  
  • 1 tablespoon black curry powder salt and pepper, to taste  
  • 600g pumpkin or butternut squash   
  • 1 red onion, sliced  
  • 2 red chillies, chopped  
  • 4 cloves minced garlic  
  • 250ml water  
  • 250ml coconut cream   


  1. Place your pot on a medium heat then add the oil and spices.
  2. Once the spices are sizzling, add the pumpkin or butternut squash and mix well so all the pieces are coated.
  3. Add the onion, chillies, garlic, and water and bring to a simmer.
  4. Place the lid on the pot and leave for 25 minutes.  
  5. Remove the lid and check the pumpkin or butternut squash is softened.  
  6. Add the coconut cream and stir.  
  7. Return to a gentle heat.  
  8. Serve and enjoy!      

Parippu Dhal

Parippu Dhal  by The Coconut Tree

Serves 4 


  • 250g washed red lentils
  • 500ml water  
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric  
  • Pinch curry leaves  
  • 1 tablespoon crushed chillies  
  • 2 teaspoons mustard seeds  
  • 2 tablespoons mild curry powder  
  • 50ml coconut oil  
  • ½ red onion, sliced  
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced  
  • 500ml coconut milk  
  • Fresh spinach 


  1. In a large pot, add the lentils, water and turmeric and bring to the boil.
  2. Leave to simmer for about 10 minutes, until the water has disappeared, and the lentils have turned into a yellow colour.
  3. Put the pot of lentils to one side.  
  4. In a separate pan, add the coconut oil and bring to heat.  
  5. Add the onion and lightly fry, then add the garlic.  
  6. Add the remaining spices, mix well then fry for a further minute.  
  7. Remove from the heat and replace with the pot of lentils.  
  8. Add the onions to the lentils, and pour in the coconut milk.  
  9. Mix well and bring to heat.  
  10. Add salt to taste, then serve with fresh spinach leaves. 

Cashew Nut Curry

Serves 4  


  • 1 litre water  
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric  
  • 1 teaspoon fennel 
  • 1 teaspoon cumin  
  • 5 cloves  
  • 5 cardamom pods  
  • 3 tablespoons mild curry powder  
  • 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon  
  • Pinch curry leaves  
  • 400g raw cashew nuts  
  • 50ml coconut oil  
  • 1 red onion, sliced  
  • 500ml coconut milk  
  • 200g green peas  


  1. In a large pot, add the water, cashew nuts and turmeric and mix well.
  2. Bring the pan to a boil.
  3. Once boiled, check the cashews are nice and soft then drain and leave to one side.
  4. In a new pan, add the coconut oil, bring to medium heat then add the onion.
  5. Stir regularly until golden brown.
  6. Add the remaining spices and mix well.
  7. Remove pan from the heat and replace with the pot of cashews.
  8. Add the onions to the cashew pot, then stir in the coconut milk.
  9. Bring to the boil.
  10. Once boiling, mix in the peas and remove from the heat.
  11. Add salt and pepper to taste, serve and enjoy!  

Recipe from thecoconut-tree.com