Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Savory Sri Lankan Rolls

These savory Sri Lankan Rolls are always a favorite at parties.  They are our version of the Chinese Egg Roll.  But instead of using the egg-roll wrapper, a thin crepe like pancake is used to hold the filling and then breaded and deep fried.  The filling is always savory, but can be varied from meat to a vegetarian filling.  I made a combination of ground chicken and vegetable filling. 

The Filling:
1lb of ground meat  (see note)
2 carrots finely grated (optional)
4 boiled potatoes coarsely mashed
1 medium onion chopped
2 green chilies seeded and chopped
1-2 Tbs of grated fresh garlic
2 inches of fresh ginger grated
10-15 curry leaves (torn)
1 small stick of cinnamon
1 Tbs of finely minced fresh mint leaves
2-4 Tbs of soy sauce
1 Tbs of vinegar
1 Tbs of curry powder
1/2 tsp of turmeric
1/2 tsp of chili flakes or powder
salt and pepper to taste (I used a lot of pepper)
juice of half a lime

Note:  you can use same flavorings for any ground meat (beef, pork, lamb) or with canned tuna/mackerel.  If you decide to make vegetarian rolls, add more potato and carrots.  You can also use peas, cauliflower etc... 

Directions.   Prior to making your filling boil your potatoes and coarsely mash them. Then saute your ground meat with the onion, garlic, ginger curry leaves, cinnamon stick and carrots.  Once the meat is cooked, add powdered spices and saute for another minute. Then add your soy sauce, vinegar, mint leaves and salt and pepper to taste.  Next add the mashed up potatoes and the lime juice as the final step and make sure you taste you mixture for seasoning.  Allow the filling to cool down before making the pancakes.

The Pancake:
2 cups cold water
1 cup milk
1 tsp salt
1 egg
2 cups of all purpose flour

Beat all ingredients together until it forms a thin pancake batter.

Heat an 8 inch non-stick frying pan and grease it with a little oil between each pancake. Pour a ladle full of the batter into the pan and swirl it around gently until it forms a thin pancake.  Cook until set without browning.  There is no need to flip the pancake. 

Place the cooked pancake on a plate and add about 2 Tbs of filling.  Proceed to roll the pancake like an egg-roll.

You will need to roll each pancake immediately so the warm pancake adheres together from it's own heat.  If you allow the pancake to cool, it will fall apart and not stay rolled. This is great if two people are making this dish so one can cook the pancake and the other fill and roll.  But if you are working alone, roll the prepared pancake with the filling while a new pancake is cooking on the stove and repeat. You can cook the pancakes on medium heat so it gives you some additional time to fill the pancake.

My Mother's skillful hand

Leave about 1/2 a cup of batter to use as a coating for the breadcrumbs to stick to the rolls.  Simply dip each roll gently in the batter and get it on all sides.  Then coat with some plain breadcrumbs.

Get all your rolls breaded and ready to fry.

Fry in hot canola oil in a deep skillet until golden brown (about 1 minute or less depending on how hot your oil is).  Note: You will want enough oil in the pan so the roll is submerged in the oil.  Allow to drain on paper towels.

You can enjoy these warm or at room temperature. If you are making them as a hors d'oeuvre you can cut them in half.  These do freeze well and you can reheat them in an oven until heated through. Enjoy.


  1. Wow - wow - WOW! Those look SO delicious! I could sit down - ignore all the party guests - and eat the entire plate! If someone tried to take one - I would be a very, very bad guest!

    Feel free to make more anytime!

  2. Wow, indeed! I've never heard of anything like this. A deep-fried, breaded, filled crepe spring roll, what more do you need? These are definitely going on my "to make" list!

  3. This sounds and looks wonderful! The recipe has been saved and you've been buzzed!

  4. These rolls look so gorgeous . I would love to have them with a green coriander chutney.
    You have a wonderful blog , loved your eggplant dish too :-)

  5. i make the filling different deliciously done rolls

  6. Wow, these look delicious! So savory!

  7. Woman, are you joking???!?!? This looks so fantastic! I'm very curious about this crepe that is made and I'll make it very soon! Thank you for sharing this recipe with us. I can definitely see them being gobbled up at parties :-)

  8. I absolutely adore these breadcrumb-coated-crepes. I can just hear le crrrrunch. Stunning!

  9. WOW! Lookz delicious.. I'm gonna try it.. :)

  10. its good

    plz give the recipe of the sauce..

    is it ok if i don't put the curry leaves???


    1. Hi Sarah, If you do not have access to curry leaves, you can certainly omit them. I did not make the sauce in the pictures. It's actually a mae ploy sauce in a bottle. You can find this sweet chili sauce in most Asian grocery stores or even American grocery stores in the International aisle. Hope you enjoy. ~ Ramona

  11. Hi could you be a bit more precise about the pancake what does 'one cup' mean is that one tea
    Cup or a coffee cup? Do you have a grams example.

    1. one American cup equals about 120 grams. Hope that helps.

    2. Get some measuring cups from a pound shop, comes in very handy

  12. Hi, these look absolutely delicious. I can't wait to make them soon. :D

  13. i love love love your blog! i havent learnt 90% of my sri lankan recipes from your blog ::):):) keep those recipes coming :)

    1. Thank you very much!! :) I hope you keep enjoying all the recipes. ~ Ramona

  14. Please let me know the nutritional value of one roll.

  15. Wow, very clever idea with the fried crepes!!!. Love this savory version and am totally going to try it... But, my mind is spinning right now. Would be great with cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice in the crumbs and something like apple pie filling, or bananas and nutella, or any type of pie filling. :) Served with whipped cream or ice cream... I usually use spring roll wrappers to make them, but i love the crepe idea. My clients will be so happy!! :)

  16. I literally can smell these and my mouth is WATERING!! Thanks so much for the recipe :)

  17. I'm so in love with all of the flavors in this!
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  18. I tried making these but the crepes just won't stick together I am rolling hot straight from the pan what am I doing wrong?

    1. Hi Amanda, Sorry to hear you are having trouble. The only thing I can think is maybe you are cooking the crepes too long. You want them just cooked through and still pliable. If they are too stiff they won't roll and stick. Hope that does the trick. Good luck. :)

    2. Thanks for your reply!! Will try again 😄 fingers crossed. I have had these before and they are Devine!

  19. Mmm, this looks delicious! Thanks for sharing. I think I just found my breakfast for tomorrow…
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  20. this article, it was really informative yammy and testy your receipe, I’ll be looking forward for your next Kathi roll online order

  21. Thanks for the recipe, the rolls are tasting great. The guide missed out the potatoes and the onions though...

    1. So glad you enjoyed the recipe Blake! Sorry for my mistake of omitting the potatoes and onions... I have corrected for future reference. :) Thanks again for dropping by and trying the recipe.

  22. Thanks for providing good idea,Thanks for your sharing.


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  24. Thanks for providing good idea,Thanks for your sharing.....!!


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