Coq au Vin

This classic French chicken dish is normally made with bacon, but I decided to try without. It came out nicely, full of flavour. Serve on special occasions.
750g chicken thighs and legs with the skin on
1 cup chopped tomatoes
1 tbs tomato puree
1 cup small shallots (in Srilanka we use these a lot)
2 cups carrot, peeled and thickly sliced
250g chestnut mushrooms, thickly sliced
4 garlic cloves, chopped
4 tbs olive oil
2 cups red wine
1 1/2 cup chicken stock
2 star anise
Salt and pepper to taste
Bouquet garni – 3 bay leaves, 2 sprigs rosemary, 3 sprigs thyme, 5 cloves tied into a small bundle (make sure you remove it before serving).
Fresh thyme for garnish
To thicken:
2 tbs plain flour
2 tbs butter
Heat the butter in a pan, add the flour to make a puree; add into the casserole
Heat half of the oil in a thick-bottom pan, add the chicken skin side down and cook 5-8 minutes uncovered, turning once until golden brown on both sides. Remove to a separate bowl. Heat the rest of the oil then add the garlic, onion and mushrooms, then the carrot, tomato, and tomato puree. Add red wine, chicken stock and herbs, put the chicken back into the pan and mix carefully. Lower the heat to a gentle simmer, then add the thickener. Cover and cook for 50 mins – 1hr. Remove the star anise and bouquet garni, check the seasoning. Garnish with fresh thyme and serve with a potato bake.

© Ajith Perera. All rights reserved.

Pork Wellington

Inspired by the legendary dish, Beef Wellington, I have added my own ingredients to transform pork fillet into something special. The flavour of the apple really enhances the taste.
750g pork fillet
300g brown mushrooms (chopped)
3 celery sticks (peeled and chopped)
1 large onion (chopped)
2 green apples (grated)
2 garlic cloves (chopped)
30cm x 40cm puff pastry sheet
2 tbs black sesame seeds
2 tbs Dijon mustard
2 egg yolks (beaten)
3 tbs olive oil
Salt and pepper
Heat the oven to 180*
Heat a non-stick frying pan, and seal the fillet of pork. Keep it on the side.
Using the same pan heat the oil then add garlic, onion, celery, and mushrooms. Stir together, and when the aromas come out add the apple. Remove from the heat.
Lay the pastry on a sheet pan and spread with the mushroom mixture. Then lay on the pork fillet and spread with the mustard and seasoning.
Center the fillet, fold over the pastry to wrap and seal.
Keep it in the fridge for 20 minutes
Take it out and brush with egg yolk, and sprinkle with the sesame seeds.
Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until golden brown.

© Ajith Perera. All rights reserved.

Sesame Marmite Chicken

Roasted sesame seeds, lemon zest and Marmite bring amazing taste to this chicken recipe! I hope you’ll love it as much as we do in our house.
500g chicken breast or thigh (skinless and boneless)
 2 tbs sesame seeds (roasted)
1 tbs coriander seeds
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tbs crushed chilli
1/2 tsp turmeric powder
1 tbs lemon zest
1 tbs Marmite
1 tsp thyme leaves
3 tbs lemon juice
1 tbs ginger
4 cloves of garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
Heat the oven to 180*
Blend all the ingredients together as a paste
Marinade the chicken and then bake for 30 to 40 minutes
Cover and keep on one side for around 10 minutes, then slice and serve with  rice

© Ajith Perera. All rights reserved.

Chicken and Vegetable Quiche

This is a delicious yet simple bake for lunch, full of flavour too. Instead of chicken you can just use vegetables.



Frozen puff pastry roll

300g skinless and boneless chicken (diced)

250g potato (boiled and diced)

150g leeks (sliced)

100g grated carrot

150g baby spinach (washed and dried)

2 garlic cloves (chopped)

2 eggs (beaten)

2 tbs olive oil

2 tbs lime juice

1/2. cup double cream

150g cheddar cheese (grated)

50g parsley (chopped)

Salt and pepper to taste



Heat the oven to 175*

Line the pastry tray with the puff pastry sheet and keep in the fridge

Heat the oil in a pan, add garlic and leeks cook for about 5 minutes

Add the chicken and for cook another 15 minutes, then add salt and pepper

Remove from heat, add spinach, carrot, lime juice and half of the parsley

In bowl mix the eggs and cream

Take the pastry out of the fridge, fill with the chicken and vegetable mixture then pour the egg mixture over the top

Sprinkle with the cheese and rest of the parsley

Bake around 30 to 40 minutes until golden brown

Serve with mixed salad leaves

© Ajith Perera. All rights reserved.

Stuffed Cuttlefish

In Sri Lanka we use fresh cuttlefish in a variety of different ways. I have my own recipe for this curry using my Mum’s curry ingredients. It tastes so amazing that I just had to share it with you all.


500g small cuttlefish (cleaned and washed – ask your fishmonger)

1 medium onion (chopped)

3 garlic cloves (chopped)

2 tbs chopped fresh ginger

1 big tomato (chopped)

1 tsp chilli powder

1tsp roasted curry powder

1 tsp black pepper powder

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

3 cardamom (chopped)

1 inch cinnamon stick

1 inch lemon grass (chopped)

2 sprigs of curry leaves

2 tbs fresh  lime or lemon juice

2 tbs coconut oil (or vegetable oil)

1 cup coconut milk (200ml)

Salt to taste

For the stuffing 

50g leeks or spring onion (chopped)

100g carrot (grated)

100g cauliflower (grated)

100g parboiled potato (diced)

2 tbs fresh parsley or chives (chopped)

1 tbs olive oil or butter

Salt and pepper to taste


Heat the oil or butter in a saucepan, add spring onion or leeks and cook for about 7 minutes

Add the remaining vegetables and cook all together for another 5 minutes, then check the seasoning

Remove from the heat and let it cool down

Stuff the vegetables mixture into the cuttlefish, and keep on one side

Heat the oil in a pan, add garlic, onion, ginger, lemon grass, curry leaves, cardamom and cinnamon.  When the aromas come out add the chopped tomato and mix well. Then add the curry powders and cook for another five minutes

Add the coconut milk and let it simmer, check the seasoning

Then arrange the stuffed cuttlefish carefully into the curry, cover and cook for a further 7 minutes

Remove from the heat, and add the lime juice

Serve with rice or bread

© Ajith Perera. All rights reserved.

Meat Loaf

My Dad used to make this meat loaf with three types of minced meat – lamb, pork and beef for special occasions. Recently I made this dish for my staff at the hotel using the same method but using only minced beef. It seemed to go down really well.

1kg minced beef
200g onion (chopped)
250g fresh brown bread (crumbled)
3 garlic cloves (chopped)
3tbs English mustard paste
2tbs olive oil
1 tsp allspice powder
1 tbs crushed chilli
4 tbs chopped parsley, thyme, and oregano (dried)


Heat the oven to 180*. Heat the oil in a pan, add garlic and fry until golden brown. Add the onion, mix together and cook for about 6-7 minutes. In a bowl combine the meat and onion mixture with the rest of the ingredients, mix well by hand. Line a tray with baking paper, shape the mixture into a loaf and bake for 25-30 minutes. Cool slightly and slice. Serve with gravy.

© Ajith Perera. All rights reserved.

Three Meat Curry

Three Meat Curry 

Three meat curry is one the main ingredients for lump rice (recipe to follow). However, it is delicious with string hoppers, rice or bread.



250g skinless chicken, diced

250g lamb or mutton, diced

250g pork, diced

1 tsp allspice

1 tbs roasted curry powder

1/2 tsp turmeric powder

1 tbs crushed chilli

1 tbs crushed black pepper

1 tbs tamarind paste

2 cups hot water

1 tbs coconut vinegar

1 tbs vegetable oil

1 onion, chopped

2 green chillies, sliced

3 garlic cloves, chopped

2 tbs ginger root, chopped

2 sprigs curry leaves

1 piece of lemon grass, crushed

1 cinnamon stick

Salt to taste


Marinade the meat in a bowl with the spices, tamarind, vinegar and salt. Set a side for a half and hour. Heat the oil in a pan, add the garlic, ginger, onion, lemon grass, cinnamon, curry leaves and green chillies. Mix well and cook until the onions are golden brown. Next add the meat mixture, combine everything together and add the hot water. Cover and cook for about 20 minutes on a slow flame, stirring constantly until the gravy becomes thick and the meat has absorbed the flavours. Check the seasoning. Remove the cinnamon stick and lemon grass before serving.

© Ajith Perera. All rights reserved.

Duck Breast With Orange And Herbs

A perfect dish for the holiday season!

Duck Breast With Orange and Herbs

Duck Breast With Orange and Herbs



3 duck breasts

2 oranges, sliced (peel on)

1 onion, sliced

3 garlic cloves, crushed

1 teaspoon black peppercorn

1 tablespoon olive oil

500ml  fish stock

1 cup water

Bay leaf




  • Heat the oil in the pan, cook duck breast until the fat comes out
  • Remove as much of the fat as possible, then add all the other ingredients
  • Cook for about 30 minutes until the meat is nicely cooked and tender,  and the sauce thickens. Check the seasoning.
  • Slice the duck, serve on top of a mixed vegetable base or crushed new potatoes then pour over the sauce.


© Ajith Perera. All rights reserved.

Prawn Curry (Isso Vanjanaya)

Spicy prawns with a coconut gravy…

Prawn Curry (Isso Vanjanaya)


5oog prawns, cleaned and shelled

1 red or white onion, chopped

3 garlic cloves, chopped

3 green chillies, chopped

2 sprigs curry leaves

1″ piece cinnamon stick

1″ lemon grass

1 teaspoon raw curry powder

1 teaspoon roast curry powder

1 teaspoon chilli powder

1 teaspoon mustard powder

¼ teaspoon turmeric powder

1½ cups coconut milk

½ lime

salt to taste

***   ***   ***   ***   *** 


  • Wash the prawns well and let drain
  • Mix all the spice ingredients, add to prawns and allow to marinade for 10 minutes
  • Mix in the coconut milk and cook for 10 minutes until the gravy is absorbed
  • Add lime juice and check the seasoning
  • Remove from the heat (to prevent curdling)






© Ajith Perera. All rights reserved.

Turkey Roulade

The first time I tasted roulade was in Karlsruhe in Germany. It was a beef roulade, traditionally served with boiled potatoes. After this, I sampled roulades of pork, veal and lamb before deciding to try my own version, made here with turkey (but you could use chicken).

Ajith and the Turkey Roulade


4 turkey breasts (or chicken), boneless and skinless

4 strips back bacon

1 cup tomato sauce

I tablespoon tomato paste

1 red onion, chopped

4 cloves garlic, chopped

1 1/2 cup chicken stock

4 tablespoons celery, chopped

4 tablespoons gherkins, chopped

4 bay leaves

4 sprigs thyme

1 glass red wine

2 tablespoons dijon mustard

2 tablespoons olive oil

salt and pepper

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METHOD (click below)

© Ajith Perera. All rights reserved.