Test Driving the Ultimate Meal Kit from Hoppers - the best of the Sri Lankan restaurant, delivered

https://www.hot-dinners.com/Features/Hot-Dinners-recommends/diy-food-meal-kits-london-restaurants-cook-homeYes, there's quite a bit to this feast but, as you might just be able to make out, it's all very clearly labelled.

What can you tell us about Hoppers?

If you're unfamiliar with Hoppers, it's a Sri Lankan restaurant that's from the same people who brought us Gymkhana. The restaurant has been extremely popular from the get-go, starting in Soho before adding a second branch at Marylebone and another more recently at King's Cross. This is their at-home offering, courtesy of their online shop Cash & Kari.

How does the online shop work - is it all about restaurant boxes?

Not quite - although it does centre around home versions of some of their most popular dishes. You can either buy dishes individually and create your own Hoppers feast - or you can pick one of their ready-made endeavours. We tried the Ultimate Hoppers Meal Kit which provides a feast for four on one night or you can split up the dishes for two people over two nights (there's a LOT here). 

How much effort is involved here?

We'd say it's about medium effort compared to some of the dishes we've tried. You can't just chuck it in the oven - there's a degree of bringing the ingredients together with a mix of reheating, roasting and deep-frying involved. 

There is a large two-sided instructions sheet broken down into the individual dishes - and one that makes suggestions on overall timing if you're aiming to have it all in one go. Make sure you read that first (it's very easy to follow), and maybe take a look at some of the videos on their Instagram TV channel - that should help a lot. All the pots are clearly marked - no colour coding here, which makes it so much easier to gather everything together. 

Here's how it all turned out for us:

https://www.hot-dinners.com/Features/Hot-Dinners-recommends/diy-food-meal-kits-london-restaurants-cook-homeA Hoppers signature dish - the mutton rolls. These are ideally just deep-fried for about five minutes - but there's a shallow-fry method too. Vegetarian versions are also available.

https://www.hot-dinners.com/Features/Hot-Dinners-recommends/diy-food-meal-kits-london-restaurants-cook-homeThe mutton rolls come with the Hoppers Hot Sauce - the perfect accompaniment. This also works well as a snack while you're getting everything else ready. 

https://www.hot-dinners.com/Features/Hot-Dinners-recommends/diy-food-meal-kits-london-restaurants-cook-homeThe Lamb Kothu dish, popular as Sri Lankan street food, mainly involves gradually adding the ingredients to a pan or wok with eggs (optional but strongly recommended), onions, shredded cabbage and carrots, chopped roti and finally the lamb kari all added to the mix. It all takes less than ten minutes and is frankly a meal all in itself. 

https://www.hot-dinners.com/Features/Hot-Dinners-recommends/diy-food-meal-kits-london-restaurants-cook-homeOne of the cornerstones of the feast - and one where hoppers make an appearance. This is the Kalupol chicken - a whole spatchcock chicken covered in Kalupol spices and butter. Put this in the oven first as it takes the longest - and match it with sambal and kari sauce. The kari sauce itself is FANTASTIC - a perfect accompaniment with the chicken. As for those hoppers in the background, these string versions can be steamed in a few minutes. 

https://www.hot-dinners.com/Features/Hot-Dinners-recommends/diy-food-meal-kits-london-restaurants-cook-homeAnother Hoppers signature dish - this is the Bone Marrow Varuval. Roast the bone marrow and then simmer it in the rasa sauce before finishing with fried drumstick leaves. It's all mopped up with their rotis, which you can see at the back (each just fried for a minute). 

https://www.hot-dinners.com/Features/Hot-Dinners-recommends/diy-food-meal-kits-london-restaurants-cook-homeAnd finally, you can just attack their choco-coconut biscuit pudding in the tub with no prep needed. 

Any drinks to go with all that?

There are two version of the feast - one with drinks and one without. Order with and you'll get some Hoppers lagers and ales as well as their Arrack Attack Bottled Cocktail. We actually went for the white ruby punch (below) but there's a section of their site for drinks and you can add as much as you need, with Elephant House softs available too.

https://www.hot-dinners.com/Features/Hot-Dinners-recommends/diy-food-meal-kits-london-restaurants-cook-homeThe White Ruby Punch is Ceylon Arrack, White Port, White Tea, Jasmine, Kumquat - and it comes with basil seeds which you soak for 15 minutes before adding them to the drink. We'd strongly recommend ordering this. 

What's available for vegetarians?

As well as the veg rolls mentioned earlier, there's a paneer kothu roti and a vegan breadfruit curry - as well as a vegan meal kit that includes the breadfruit curry, the rolls and string hoppers. 

Anything else?

Keep an eye on the Cash & Kari site in the coming weeks as they'll be adding a lot more Sri Lankan products and food to the mix. 


While there are some dishes from the Hoppers restaurant that can't be replicated at home - this does an extremely good job of getting as close as you can. Everything we ate was of extremely high quality. There's just something wonderful about all the Hoppers sauces in the dishes we tried and there's also a great balance of plenty of heat without overpowering the food. You'll need to do a very small amount of work to make it as good as can be, but it pays dividends. Overall - very highly recommended.   

Hot Dinners were sent the Ultimate Meal Kit as a gift. Prices are correct at the time of writing. 


More about Hoppers

Where do they deliver? Nationwide, Wednesday and Friday deliveries

How to order: On the Cash & Kari website

Find out more: Follow them on Instagram @HoppersLondon


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