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Updated by Joanna James on Mar 07, 2023
Headline for A Foodie’s Guide to Trincomalee & Nilaveli – The street food you ought to try!
Joanna James Joanna James
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A Foodie’s Guide to Trincomalee & Nilaveli – The street food you ought to try!

Trincomalee is the most famous spot on the eastern coast of Sri Lanka. There is so much to see and do here and while you are on all those adventures, why not try out what local cuisine in this part of the island has to offer as well?



There are so many street hawkers selling dhal wade and ulundu wade. This is one street food that you simply can't miss out on! Wades are best enjoyed by the beach and the place to find the best wades in Trinco would be The Wade Cart. Here, wade is deep-fried and served into an easy to carry paper bag with chillies for spice. They offer a variety of choices from normal dahl or ulundu wade to prawn wade and tempered chickpeas. The wades also have an extra spicy version for those who can't resist the fiery temptation.



Whether you are on the streets roaming about and exploring or at a resort in Trincomalee, you are bound to hear tales of this so called kottu. You'll certainly want to know what all the fuss is about right? Then all you have to do is head out one evening to the streets and you'll come across several little boutique food shops clanking metal like no tomorrow. Go, observe for yourself. This major cacophony that draws crowds to it is the preparation of kottu. The dish is 1chopped godamba (local flatbread), vegetables, egg and a choice of meat or fish. All the ingredients are cook on a slate and mixed using sheets of metal.



The waters of Trincomalee are nice and warm creating an ideal environment for fish to breed, no wonder it's rich in marine life! Therefore, this place is also famed for its seafood dishes, mainly crab. If you take a stroll towards the beach, you'll find that the little restaurants situated along the coast, each serve customers their unique version of crab. The curry is prepared using a wonderful blend of local spices and served with jasmine rice and a cold salad at one place. At another, you may find crab cooked Indian style. It's all about venturing out there and trying it.


Rice and curry

This is the Sri Lankan staple and will be available at your local hotel as well the likes of Uga Jungle Beach. The energy-boosting ingredient is fragrant boiled rice served with curries prepared with local ingredients. You can try rice & curry at the wayside shops as well. Each place will be serving different combinations of curries. Some may even give you a choice of 4 curries plus a chicken, pork, meat or fish curry you prefer as well.


Pol roti

Pol roti is a local flatbread made from coconut, flour and water. It is usually served with a spicy onion sambol called lunumiris or once again with a choice of meat or fish curry. It is available for breakfast at hotels and the local eateries and hawker stalls in the area too.

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