This January, we here at BIRD HQ are determined to beat the blues and kick start this year with a focus on all things sustainability and wellness related. What better way to draw inspiration and celebrate than the return of the much-loved eco-resort, Gili Lankanfushi, and its delicious array of sustainable, Veganuary inspired cuisine. (Stay tuned to the end for exclusive, mouthwatering recipes straight from Chef Hari’s kitchen).
This renowned resort is back and better than ever. While still honouring its laid-back philosophy and rustic chic aesthetic, it now has a brand new design concept as well as educative wellness programmes.
The 45 refurbished villas offer open-air living spaces, roof terraces and private decks with direct access to the lagoon below- the ultimate hideaway in paradise. If this wasn’t enough, the enhanced Residence and Villa suites now have new private pools for extra seclusion, perfect for honeymooners.
A firm favourite amongst all generations, Gili’s new Family Villas will ensure even the littlest guests are always entertained. With two en-suite bedrooms, a private swimming pool for children to splash in the sunshine, a rooftop terrace for further space to dine and play, as well as a living room situated over the lagoon- the whole family will have enough space to spread out, relax and make long-lasting memories.
Let’s not forget about the vast 1,700m2 Private Reserve– the largest overwater villa in the world- that holds four bedrooms in addition to a private open-air cinema, spoiling spa, air-conditioned gymnasium, infinity pool and a two-storey waterslide, directly into the lagoon. Where do we sign up?
In-keeping with the heart of the island’s vision, every piece of furniture in the new villas and living areas have been made by a skilled craftsman using upcycled materials. With so many unique touches, such as engraved stars in the coffee tables to reflect the clear night sky, your Instagram will be on Gili-overload before you’ve even stepped outside.
Dining experiences at Gili Lankanfushi have always focused on fresh and locally sourced ingredients, and daily changing menus drawing inspiration from the spice, sweetness and fragrance of Maldivian gastronomy. To celebrate the refresh of its focus on wellness and healthy eating, we have shared two tasty vegan recipes below, straight from Chef Hari’s kitchen. Bon appetit!
Aloe Vera Coconut Ceviche
- 600g aloe vera (Peeled and Small dice)
- 15g red chili (deseeded and chopped)
- 125g carrot (fine cubes)
- 60g ginger (fine Chopped)
- 75g lemongrass (chopped)
- 20g coriander leaves (chopped)
- 20g mint (chopped)
- 800ml coconut milk
- 30g lime juice
- 12g lime (zest)
- Pinch of salt
- Combine all ingredients together and mix well.
- Adjust seasoning and serve cold.
- Make sure there is no green skin in the Aloe vera (Green will give high bitter taste).
Pan-seared Vegan Scallop
Cauliflower Couscous, Pumpkin Puree, Curry Foam
- 250g White Radish (Boil and cut like scallop)
*Seared in hot pan till golden colour both side
Raw Cauliflower Couscous
- 75g Grated Cauliflower
- 15g Fine dice Tomato (Deseeded)
- 10g Chopped Parsley
- 10ml extra virgin Olive oil
- Lime juice
*Mix all together
- 100g Roasted Pumpkin
- 50ml Coconut milk
- 10ml Olive oil
*Blend all together
Coconut Curry sauce
- 25ml Vegetable oil
- 50gm Crusted Garlic & Ginger
- 1 medium Onion sliced
- 1 tbsp Curry powder
- 1 tsp Turmeric
- 1 tbsp Cumin powder
- 150ml Coconut milk
- 1 medium Fresh Tomato
- 25gm Curry leaves
- ½ tsp Mustard seeds
- 02 cloves Green cardamoms
- ½ tsp Cumin seeds
- 1 tsp Fennel seed
- 1 tbsp Coriander seed
- 01 small Cinnamon sticks
- A Few fresh coriander root
- Heat the oil in a large pan over medium-high heat.
- Crush mustard seed, cumin seed, coriander seed, fennel seed, cardamom, cinnamon stick, curry, rambha leaves, crusted ginger and garlic then add and onion, tomato, curry powder. Sauté over medium heat for a few minutes.
- Mix the coconut milk then simmer for 5 minutes. Strain and adjust the seasoning. Use hand blender to create foam.
Serve the pumpkin puree (hot), before adding the radish (hot) on top. Accompany this with cauliflower couscous (cold) and curry foam.