Dish It Out: Roshani Wickramasinghe

Sep 07 2023. views 159

How do our food experts cook and eat? This week, food blogger, the HungryLankan, Roshani takes our Q&A! 

What’s your first memory of cooking? I was probably around 8 years old. I remember cooking milk rice in one of those mini clay pots that my mom bought from the Sunday market. No one could eat that though!

What skill do you possess that you know is undeniably the influence of someone who taught you to cook? Basic cooking skills like the way you handle ingredients, kitchen hygiene, and menu pairings, food storage, I got all of that from my mom. I didn’t learn to cook until I got married but my mom being a very busy full-time worker, we all had a fair share of work in the kitchen.

Your proudest recipe developed for a client so far? The first work I did was for Buzzfeed and I got to make a Bibikkan recipe for them. I honestly was not a fan of Bibikkan but ended up making it four times cause I wanted the recipe to be perfect. They filmed a beautiful professional video with my recipe and it was great!

A recipe on your blog Hungry Lankan you’d recommend anyone to try? My Fish Buns Recipe or any bread or buns recipe to be honest. I don’t know how many times I got compliments for my buns recipes. Many people use my dough recipes as a base to make other different buns as well.

What was your favourite childhood meal? I grew up in a school hostel. So the day I go back to the hostel at the end of the school holidays is more like a day trip to us. And my mom used to make this banana leaf-wrapped rice packet with polos curry, stir-fried sprats, cassava leaves mallung, red lentil curry and a boiled egg. We stopped the vehicle on the way somewhere to eat it. That was for me like the last good mom’s home-cooked meal before I got to have hostel food for a few months. That rice packet has a very special place in my heart.

Dead or alive, who would be your dream dinner-party guests to cook for? That’d be our families and my closest group of friends. But it really would be a dream at this point given that we are all scattered around the world. I’d make a good traditional rice and curry spread.

What’s something you love to eat but wouldn’t bother to make? Doughnuts. I love them but I don’t want to eat more than one. It’s easier to buy one than spending hours making the dough, frying and glazing.

What’s a dish that sounds hard to make but actually isn’t? Sushi. It’s intimidating when you think about it. And they certainly do look complex but once you have the ingredients and a sushi mat, they are really easy to make.

What food video of yours made it to Buzzfeed Tasty? A Kokis video. I made the recipe and did the filming, and they did the editing. That video got over 7 million views.

What’s something great about your job as a recipe developer people would be surprised to know? That sometimes, I get paid to eat what I made!

As a recipe developer, your thoughts on modernizing traditional dishes? The world evolves and moves forward and I think the food world.

Your favourite odd food pairing? Not that odd but I like to eat Watalappan and Vanilla ice cream mixed together.

Your favourite recipe that has been passed down to you from family? Many of my curry recipes are inspired by mom’s dishes. I particularly like her cauliflower curry which she cooks similar to a meat curry.

It’s your last day on earth, where are you? I’ll be at home with my husband and my dog. I’ll eat all the Sri Lankan comfort food I can make and I’ll probably order from my favourite restaurants too...



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