top of page

Ruwan's Coconut Sambol Sliders

My coconut sambol sliders are fun as an appetizer with your favourite drinks, perfect to pack up for picnics or afterschool activities or, even as a quick snack on-the-go.

For the slider buns, use freshly baked brioche buns, or petite buns that are soft with a bit of sweetness to compliment the coconut and spices.


  • 2 cups finely scraped coconut (either fresh, frozen, or desiccated)

  • 1/2 small red onion, peeled and finely chopped

  • 2 teaspoons cayenne powder

  • 2 tablespoons paprika

  • 1 teaspoon dried Maldives fish, ground, or to taste (optional)

  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt, or to taste

  • 2 tablespoons lime juice, or to taste


  1. Place the coconut, onion, cayenne, paprika, Maldives fish (if using), and salt in a large bowl. Using your hands, mix all the ingredients together to ensure all of the coconut is coated. Taste and adjust the salt. Add the lime juice over everything, mix again to combine, and taste, adding more lime juice if preferred.

  2. Temper the coconut sambol in a shallow pan. Begin by tempering (with just a bit of preferred oil) some torn curry leaves, and onion until the onions are golden. Then add about a teaspoon of black mustard seeds and temper until the seeds begin to pop in the pan. Then add the coconut sambol and stir in the pan until it is nicely toasted and there is no moisture (the moisture of the fresh sambol has dissipated).

  3. Slice the slider buns in halves and toast under a grill until warm and slightly crisped on the top, but not blackened or overly crunchy.

  4. Generously butter the buns and place a good amount (about 2 heaping tablespoons) of the tempered coconut sambol in each bun. Secure with toothpick!

See this article for more information on tempering, and of course the cookbook for fulsome info and recipes!

Coconut Sambol recipe by Ruwanmali Samarakoon-Amunugama, from Milk, Spice and Curry Leaves, copyright © 2020 by Ruwanmali Samarakoon-Amunugama.



bottom of page