Maldivian Kulhi Riha | Lonumedhu

Maldivian Kulhi Riha


Kulhi Riha is a Maldivian spicy tuna curry that people have been enjoying for ages. It is served with either roshi (Maldivian flat bread) or with rice. Traditionally people use bilimbi for this curry, but as we couldn’t get any, we have used lime instead.

One of the main ingredients of Kulhi Riha is coconut milk. So, it is important to use good quality, creamy coconut milk. For that reason, we are using Real Thai Coconut Milk, provided to us by one of our partners, Sosun Fihaara. According to the Real Thai website, this is 100% fresh coconut milk, that is not from any concentrate, and it doesn’t have added colors. It can be used in a variety of dishes, such as curries, sweet foods or even drinks.


Serving size: 3-4



  • 315g tuna
  • 3 dried chilies
  • 1 tsp whole cumin
  • ¼ tsp fenugreek seeds
  • 1 inch piece of cinnamon
  • 1 medium onion
  • 6 cardamom pods
  • 1 scotch bonnet pepper
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 10 curry leaves
  • 3-inch pandan leaf
  • 1 ½ inch ginger grated
  • 3 cloves of garlic grated
  • 2/3 tsp salt
  • 2 cups thin coconut milk (1/2 cup Real Thai Coconut Milk to 1 ½ cup water)
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • ¼ cup Real Thai Coconut Milk
  • 1 tsp lime juice



  1. First, cut the tuna into bite size pieces of around 1 ½ inches. Set aside.
  2. Using a blender, blend dried chilis, whole cumin, fenugreek, and cinnamon until they form a powder. This took us 45 seconds on medium high speed.
  3. Next, thinly slice the onions and snip off the ends of the cardamom pods. Then slice the scotch bonnet in half.
  4. Heat oil in a big pot. Add in the sliced onions, cardamom pods, curry leaves, and pandan leaf.
  5. While stirring, sauté the onions until they begin to take on a brownish tint. Add the grated garlic and ginger, then sauté for another 30 seconds.
  6. Then add in the spices you blended earlier into the pot, along with salt. Cook until you can smell the spices, which takes around 1 minute.
  7. After that, add in the tuna, scotch bonnet, thin coconut milk, chili powder, and give it a good stir to combine everything. For the thin coconut milk, we used ½ cup Real Thai Coconut Milk mixed with 1 ½ cup water.
  8. Cover the pot and cook the curry on medium low heat for 15 minutes. Stir it half way through to make sure everything is combined well and evenly cooking.
  9. Add in ¼ cup Real Thai Coconut Milk, mix well, and test whether the curry needs more chili or salt depending on your preferences. Then cook for another 2 minutes on medium heat.
  10. Right before you take it off the heat, add 1 tsp lime and stir for the last time. This curry tastes best when it is warm, so you can always heat it up later in the day as well.


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