Pea Tendrils with Coconut Recipe

Pea Tendrils with Coconut
Makes: 4 servings

This is a mallum (sometimes transcribed mallung), a traditional dish from Sri Lanka that is often made with wild greens. The variety of greens used to make mallums in Sri Lanka is staggering, a testimony to the tropical lushness of the island.

This recipe, using fresh pea tendrils, or pea shoots, is a favorite. Notice that everything is simply put into a pot and cooked together. There’s no oil for frying, no water for boiling other than the water clinging to the washed greens.
Just follow the recipe and see what happens.

  • 1/2 pound pea tendrils (about 8 cups chopped, loosely packed)
  • 1/2 cup fresh or frozen grated coconut
  • 2 green cayenne chiles, finely chopped
  • 1/3 to 1/2 cup shallots, finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  1. Wash the pea tendrils and drain. Gather them into a tight bundle and finely slice crosswise.
  2. Combine with all the other ingredients in a medium heavy pot and mix well.
  3. Place over high heat and cook, stirring frequently, for about 1 minute. Then cover tightly and cook for about 3 minutes, until the pea tendrils have wilted and the shallots are tender. Serve on a flat plate.

Note: This makes an easy and welcome green vegetable side with a meal of roast or grilled chicken, curry, and rice.

This recipe, while from a trusted source, may not have been tested by the CHOW food team.