Country 011 – Sri Lanka (Anantha Bhavan)

: 4646 Heritage Hills Boulevard, Mississauga
Website: None

Apparently a mega-popular Sri Lankan street food, I’ll admit that I wasn’t even particularly familiar with kottu roti before trying it at Anantha Bhavan.

Sometimes you try a new dish, and it’s strange and unfamiliar; it’s good, but you can see why it might be considered an acquired taste.  This was not one of those times.

I honestly think anyone would enjoy this — it’s essentially a South Asian version of hash.  Consisting of pieces of roti (a flatbread) griddled with eggs, veggies, meat, and spices, it’s got all the crispy, starchy, eggy textures you expect from a hash, but thoroughly infused with floral Sri Lankan spices.  It’s pure comfort food.

At Anantha Bhavan, you can get it vegetarian, with chicken, or with mutton.  A quick Google search revealed mutton to be traditional, so that’s what I got.  A couple of pieces of meat were a bit on the chewy side, but aside from that the morsels were tender and tasty.

It’s one of those dishes where once you start eating, you can’t stop.  I was on my lunch break and didn’t particularly want to go back to work stuffed, so I thought I’d eat about half and save the rest for later. Easier said than done.  And it’s a huge portion for seven bucks, so it’s a pretty good value, too.

How have I gone my whole life without having even heard of this, let alone tried it?  How is this dish not a bigger deal?  I don’t get it.  I can only bemoan all those years spent kottu roti-less, like a sucker.  Thanks a lot, society.

Anantha Bhavan - the restaurant Anantha Bhavan - the inside Anantha Bhavan - Kottu Roti