7 must-have Sri Lankan festive sweets

7 must-have Sri Lankan festive sweets

7 must-have Sri Lankan festive sweets

Written by Staff Writer

28 Feb, 2019 | 2:15 pm

COLOMBO (News 1st): Indulge in the mouth-watering goodness of Sri Lankan Traditional Gourmet Sweets. The connoisseur of good food, Sri Lanka, will awaken your taste buds with its creative hand-cooked sweet delicacies. In Sri Lanka, no meal is complete without a sugary delight. It doesn’t have to be a lavish dessert, just a cup of curd and treacle would be just right!

Most of the traditional Sri Lankan sweets are made using the domestic spices and a few key ingredients: coconut milk, treacle/jaggery, and rice flour are MUST on the list!

Next time you visit mother Lanka, make sure you try these purely Sri Lankan treats:

  • Aasmi

So neatly and carefully handcrafted, this melt in the mouth sweet ‘aasmi’ is mostly enjoyed with tea in Sri Lanka.

It is made using rice flour, coconut milk, dawul kurundu (okra) and honey- a thick paste. Then with the use of fingers, the mixture is drizzled onto the hot oil. Once fried, the sugar syrup/ treacle is poured over. Although it is made mostly during festivals or special occasions, these treats could be found at most local bakeries.

  • Aluwa

This candy could be made in different flavors-o Cashew Aluwa, Semolina Aluwa or just the simple rice flour aluwa- each one is a true delight on its own. The nutty sweetmeat is much preferred by the locals and is mostly served during the Sinhala/Tamil New Year.

This dessert requires a lot of strength and focus. The pot-stirring may take hours and needs to be done with much care so that the softness is maintained.

*A small tip would be to never use a stand mixer while making this dish.

  • Kalu Dodol

Thick coconut milk, jaggery and rice flour mixed together – creates this jelly-like candy known as ‘Kalu Dodol’. More interesting ingredients like nuts and other fruits like raisins could be added to it, although, very time consuming to cook.

The best of them come from Southern Sri Lanka, especially Hambantota, where they even take orders and sell at local groceries or cater to events!

  • Undu Walalu/ Peni Walalu

This dish isn’t for the faint-hearted. Includes high-calorie levels but is definitely worth a shot! Undu/ Peni Walalu is made using lots (and lots) of honey.

If you find the name complicating to pronounce – just call them ‘Honey Rings’. While they look so very inviting, they taste even better. Kids are the bigger fans of this candy. It is exclusively hand-made, with no use of moulds. This dish could boost your creativity. A definite must-try!

  • Athirasa

Another sweet prepped to adorn the Festive tables during the seasons of celebrations. A sweet-cake made out of jaggery and rice flour. Just as the name says it- ‘Athirasa’ means “extremely delicious”- and so it is!

  • Kiri Toffee/ Milk Toffee

The most treasured Sri Lankan candy bars- the Milk toffee is a treat to your taste buds! The sugary milky goodness requires plenty of pot-stirring and hours of cooking time, bringing cramps to your hands. But once you taste it, you will forget all the pain and every minute you spent would seem worth it.

Condensed milk could be used as an alternative when preparing Milk Toffee, but these taste luscious with fresh milk. So always use fresh milk and Sri Lankan spices like cardamom to get the original Lankan taste.

  • Thala Guli- Sesame Candy/balls

Call them- Thala guli, Thala bola, Thala kerali, gingelly balls or even gingelly rolls. They all refer to the same Candy!

These are made in different shapes like balls or rolls.


Drowned in Sesame seeds, these healthy treats include jaggery/treacle. It is a sweetmeat that everyone must enjoy at least once in their lifetime!

Sri Lankan Spices do justice to the Sweet dishes too, a much bigger list of varieties could be found at this cultural island. Here are some of the delicacies you would want to try out:-

  • Puhul Dosi/ Ala Dosi
  • Thala Aluwa
  • Bibbikkan
  • Sowboro
  • Mung Kavum
  • Weli Thalapa and so much more.

When you walk into a local home during the festive season- you will most certainly find these sweet treats placed on a traditionally decorated table

  • Kokis, Kavum
  • Konda Kavum
  • Aggala
  • Halapa and the most important dish the Kiri Bath!!

Find these at any resort or affordable accommodation during the Avurudu Seasons and take home some sweet memories!

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