Kavaabu | Lonumedhu


View this Recipe in Dhivehi

Soft on the inside and crispy on the outside, that’s how we like our Kavaabu, and it took us a good amount of tries to come up with a recipe that had a consistency and texture that we can call just right. We also like to have a good amount of tuna in there as well, and speaking of tuna, we used a can just to keep things simple, but you can of course use an equal amount of smoked tuna.


Makes: 14 Kavaabu


  • 1 tuna can
  • 1 onion
  • 1 inch piece of ginger
  • ½ lime
  • ½ githeyo mirus (or to taste)
  • 2 tbsp. grated coconut
  • 1/2 cup. coarse rice flour
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • 1 tbsp. water
  • ½ tsp. turmeric
  • 4 curry leaves
  • 1/3 tsp. salt (or to taste)
  • 2 cups oil for frying



  1. Slice the onion and githeyo mirus thinly, mince the curry leaves and grate the ginger.
  2. In a bowl mix together the sliced onions, lime and salt. You’ll have to really squeeze and squash it with your fingers until the onions become soft and releases their juices.
  3. Then add in the ginger, githeyo mirus, grated coconut, curry leaves and turmeric, tuna and mix well again.
  4. Finally add the rice flour, regular flour and water, and mix and squeeze it well with your fingers.
  5. Pick up a portion of the mixture using your fingers and roll it into the oblong kavaabu shape; you’ll have to squeeze it a bit to make it tight. Do this until you run out of the mixture. If you are wondering about the size, we made ours using 2 tablespoon portions of the mix.
  6. Heat the oil in a large pot. It’s better to fry the kavaabu in batches, so when the oil is well heated place the first batch in the oil. Fry the kavaabu until they take on the deeper brown kavaabu colour. Also, keep the temperature of the oil in the low to medium range as otherwise you might end up with really hard exteriors and uncooked centres. For us, frying time was 10 minutes for each batch.

Note: This recipe was first published on 24 October 2018. It was updated on 11 April 2023 to correct a mistake in the measurement of an ingredient.



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