Carrot Sambal: A Jaffna-style recipe

There is a book that I love – The Monk’s Cookbook. It is full of wonderful, easy and always delicious recipes. Many of them are Sri Lankan in style, so not so far from Tamil style food (would be my guess). This is a quick side dish or salad.

The recipes are from an Aadheenam (Hindu Monastery) in Kauai, Hawaii. The founder of the Aadheenam, Gurudeva (Sivaya Subramuniyaswami)’s guru was Yogaswami from Jaffna, Sri Lanka. I have met many people who knew Yogaswami and experienced his siddhis. A strong sometimes fiery guru, onepointedly dedicated to Siva and to stillness through meditation. These recipes must originate from Gurudeva’s time with Yogaswami.

If you are ever in Kauai, visit the monastery and the magnificent temple being built there – handcarved using traditional methods in Bangalore, India and erected on site by half a dozen silphis who travel from India. (Photos below courtesy of Kauai Aadheenam.)

Carrot Sambal, Jaffna Style

Source : inspired by The Monk’s Cookbook
Cuisine: Indian / Sri Lankan
Prep time: 7 mins
Cooking time: 0 mins
Serves: 4 – 6 people, depending how you use it

500g carrots
2 tspn grated coconut or shredded coconut
0.5 cup curds / thick yoghurt
1 large onion
1 – 2 green chillies

Grate the carrots and mince the onion and chillies. Mix all ingredients well and serve at room temperature or chilled. Some grated ginger can also be added if desired.

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About Ganga108

Heat in the Kitchen, Cooking with Spirit. Temple junkie, temple builder, temple cleaner. Lover of life, people, cultures, travel. Champion of growth, change and awareness. Taker of photos. Passionate about family. Happy.
This entry was posted in 09 Early Spring, Carrots, Dairy, Indian, Salads, Spices and Herbs, Tofu, Yoghurt and Paneer, VEGETARIAN and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

43 Responses to Carrot Sambal: A Jaffna-style recipe

  1. Lucy says:


    Another book I must track down!

    It really is worth it. Easy no fuss recipes (no photos tho) and every one of them delicious.

  2. Deeba says:

    Sounds so simple & full of flavour…very nice indeed!

    Glad you like it….

  3. Cynthia says:

    This is such an original recipe. That book must be a treasure.

    It is a treasure, Cynthia. Pure and beautiful food.

  4. rachel says:

    Very simple yet flavourful

    Yes, thank you rachel.

  5. Aparna says:

    This is a nice way to have carrot. It seems almost like a “thayir pachadi” which would be a sort of Tamil raita.
    I not very informed about Srilankan cooking, But there seem to be 2 broad styles- One is Tamil which probably draws a lot from food in Tamil Nadu, and the other is Sinhalese which I think has a lot of British, Dutch, Potuguese and Malay influences.

    I am sure that you are correct about the thayir pachadi. Yogaswami came from Jaffna, so I think that the food would reflect the Tamil Nadu style cuisine. Thanks for the information, I love hearing more about the food that I love. I will look for a thayir pachadi recipe and compare.

  6. FoodJunkie says:

    I really like this recipe. I have all the ingredients in hand so I might make it for tomorrow. You know, there are a couple of books by Greek monasteries with lovely vegatarian recipes (Orthodox monks don’t eat meat, just fish a couple of days a year). Unfortunately I do not think they have been translated into English, otherwise it would be interesting for you to have a look!

    Wow, FoodJunkie, I hope that you made it. I think it is really special to be eating food that comes from the purest of places. I love the Monks Cookbook.

  7. Jude says:

    Coconuts and carrots sound like an interesting combo. Sounds like a book worth browsing… Thanks for letting us know about it!

    Hi Jude, yes, absolutely, and worth cooking from as well. I will try to bring one back with me on my next visit, to give away, perhaps….

  8. i love your description of this recipe as it pertains to the monks. sounds delicious combined with the coconuts too!

    These monks are the most special people, and I am blessed to have them in my life. I will be visiting again soon.

  9. This carrot sambal looks delicious Jennifer. I think this will be our salad for this evening, along with something on the grill…

    I hope that you got to try this Ronell, it is one of my favourites. And now that the weather is warming, I think it iwll be on the menu again quite soon.

  10. sheila greg says:

    Easy Salad and healthy too. I am going to try this out. Please do post links to your new recipes at I can get immediately notified if some new recipe is added and then I
    can visit your site immediately.


  11. shuba says:

    I have made similar preparation to your’s but minus coconut and add lemon juice….it gives great tangy taste when combined with grated carrot.

  12. Ameet says:

    thanks for sharing this cookbook and recipe. i am definitely going to look out for it!

  13. krishnan says:

    This is simple and delicious carrot pachhadi. I am surprised so many females have missed to temper with coconut oil/til oil and mustard. If you are a health freak you can use extra virgin oil from fresh coconut (venda thengai ennai) instead of the copra variety. Also use home made curd from farm fresh cow milk not pasturised or homogenized. You can also add some coriander leaves to give excellent flavor

  14. extrovertscientist says:

    Hey there! Thanks for visiting my blog… I’m really glad you did because your food looks deelish! If you read my random facts, you’ll know I’m a tad bit obsessed with everything Indian/Hindu. Especially the food! I’m not the biggest cooking enthusiast but your recipes may be worth the work… I will definitely check back to your site.

    Hey, thanks. I hope that you do find some enthusiasm for cooking Indian food – it is an amazing cuisine. Good luck with your son – have you ever thought that diet might help too?

  15. I really really wanted to love this. I was able to make it better with lemon juice and a few tsps of sugar but this dish is not for my palette.

    • ok, wait. I take it all back!! After about an hour of sitting on the counter all the flavors came together in a delicious way. I’ll be making this gain for sure. :)

      However, I will add 1/2 lemon juice, 1.5 tbsps sugar, and a 1/4 cup coconut. Even if you don’t like coconut, you will like it in this dish!

  16. m h says:

    hello and thank you for this article

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  31. Ahila says:

    May I re-blog this post on my blog?

  32. Ahila says:

    Reblogged this on A Taste of Sri Lankan cuisine and commented:
    Re-blogging A Life(Time) of Cooking’s post from 2008 sharing Jennifer Harvey’s version of Carrot sambal, Jaffna style from The Monk’s Cookbook.

  33. That’s what I’m talking about! I damn well love a carrot samba! :)

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