July 3, 2011

Warm Summer Salad

July 3, 2011
Today was supposed to be the Grand Opening of this site. I’ve planned it for months. I wanted to make sweets and cakes and goodies for the first official post. My workshop is lined with garlands and pennants. A podium is set for a festive shooting. A short speech is prepared, and Facebook and Twitter accounts are opened which, by the way, I once alleged never to do. And then, nature struck!

My right hand is under siege. Three days ago a persistent eczema invaded the index and middle finger. The next day I cut the thumb with a kitchen knife. Yesterday I grabbed a wire fence while halting a bicycle ride and, sure enough, my hand slipped and was left with a wound. As if it was not enough, I have a carpal tunnel syndrome on my wrist caused by the incessant sandpapering of wooden boards! With such predicament, there is no question of baking or rolling sweets. I barely can type with the pinky that is still unaffected (knock-knock-knock). Feast aside, the only thing I am able to offer today is a warm summer salad, without a speech. Let there be a festival later!


New potatoes (washed, cut in wedges)
Celery (cut in sticks as long as the potatoes)
Sugar peas
Fried sage
Olive oil
Lemon juice
A pinch of hing
Black pepper

Blanch the sugar peas in boiling water for a couple of minutes. Drain.
Boil the potatoes until almost cooked, but still firm and slightly hard.
Place a good sprinkle of oil in a wok, heat with a moderate temperature, briefly temper hing and black pepper.
Add the celery stalks, sauté for a while (5-7 minutes).
Add the potatoes; keep sautéing until the veggies have gotten a beautiful golden colour.
Mix with the sugar peas and avocado.
Add lemon juice and salt.
Garnish with fried sage leaves.


Make a batter with flour (any flour is good. I used wholegrain spelt, but refined flour would make more refined coating), a pinch of hing, black pepper, cayenne, salt, baking powder and water. It should have a consistency of thick pancake batter. Heat up enough oil to cover the bottom of a pan. Dip one leaf at a time in batter, coat it on both sides and slip in hot oil. Repeat until the bottom of your pan can’t handle more leaves. Turn them around once and take them out with a slotted spoon when they are golden and crisp on both sides. Make as many patches as you like. The sage leaves are tasty and garnish soups and salads with a wonderful flavour and structure.


  1. Gorgeous fresh shots and salad, my dear Laksmi! I can't fully express the joy with which I welcome you to the blogging world. I can't wait to see the great things to come! Hope your hand gets better soon!

  2. I totally agree with Xiaolu here. Hope your hand gets well soon (and your luck - touch wood). Lovely, extremely well crafted pictures and styling. I'm envious as usual, in a good way that is.


  3. Laksmiiii!!!! I've just discoverd your amazing food-photo blog by the link of you last Flickr pic! It's breathtaking... gorgeous, and very natural. I love the style of it and especially all your photos. I'll try some of your recipes, especially the asparagus-coconut soup! I've just add the link of your blog on mine :)

  4. Thanks! I'm so bewildered here in the blogging world that I don't even know how to write a comment :-). Facebook and Twitter make me sweaty when I even think about them! It will take some time to get used to all of these venues.... oh my! An old dog won't learn new tricks. Not quickly at least.

    Please, if you see anything weird here on the site (text contents excluded --- I can't fix them), let me know. If your browser throws images, titles, paragraphs, links...out of place, I would like to have a look at the problems, although I'm not sure if I'm able to fix the issues.

    Gradually I will be adding links here too, but right now I'm preoccupied with many other things... Patience!

    Thank you for the encouragement. Blessings needed and appreciated.

  5. How it happen that you posted it and I did not get it on mail? I'm your first subscriber. Does your subscribe work? Such a shame to hear about your hand. Hope you get better soon. I'll try sage leaves it looks yummy. Congratulation for grand openning. Your blog is so lovelly that it does not need fireworks and girlans.

  6. Kinga= Cintamani sorry it does not want to publish my comment with Cintamani name;-((((

  7. It is ok, Cintamani, I remember who you are...I'm not that old yet :-)The subscriptions are delivered at night time. You will get them in the morning after, not immediately. There is an option to change the deliverance time, but I have forgotten already where or how to do it :-). There are just too many technical details for me.

  8. Congrats!! I am so glad you started a site after all this time. Great start. We have a very strong contender for this years various blog awards!!

    Love the layout, the photos, the serene and calm look of your site.

  9. Beautiful Blog! LOVE LOVE LOVE the photos and recipes!! I am already a fan :)

  10. I am so happy that you finally have a blog! Your photos are always inspiring, and now I can enjoy your wonderful words, too!

  11. AnonymousJuly 04, 2011

    I am so happy you started a blog, and also double happy you informed me about it. Yupieeeeeee love love your place and i am so looking forward to all the delicious food and recipe you are going to share with us.
    Happy Cook / Finla from My Kitchen Treasures.
    My google account is going crazy so can't log in :-(

  12. Laksimi, what a beautiful blog! I`m so glad to find you here ;-)
    Don´t be afraid, it´s not so difficult as it seems at the beginning. And there is still flickr to ask smb for help)

    Kindest regards, Svet

  13. Lakshmi!!!!!!
    Thank you!!!!! I wanted very much to hear about your wonderful recipes!

  14. Every thing about this blog is beautiful and I am so glad you started it. Sorry to hear about all the accidents you went through.. get well soon!
    Loving the idea of fried sage.

  15. Thank you! And welcome on board. Yesterday was overwhelming with the flood of responses I got through e-mail, Flickr, Facebook and Twitter. It was encouraging to see there is interest. This morning I'm having a hang over! Now the work starts, the maintenance. But before that, I better feed my husband and clean the house...

  16. foto e fornelliJuly 05, 2011

    So happy that you started blogging, the best news of the day! I love your photos and I follow you already on flickr.
    The blog is soooo nice.
    Get well soon :-)

  17. Beautiful blog and lovely images! I am glad I followed the link to find your work.

  18. Love the aesthetic design and serenity of this lovely blog, beautiful..its almost like pure divine love. And the way you have described yourself and your passion in your about page is lovely. Being a lover of vegetarian food am sure this will be my favorite place to look out for some scrumptious recipes. Here i wishing you all the success in your endeavors.

  19. Çok güzel bir blogunuz var :)
    Herşey harika !
    Çok başarılısınız..
    Türkiye'den sevgilerimle..

  20. Nice cuts on the vegetables. It must have taken a good grasp of a kitchen knife. I like the photography shots as well.

  21. This work was perfectly awesome. Thanks also for the recipe, this is awesome indeed! Hoping your hand gets better soon!

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  22. FoodGeekGrazeMay 31, 2015

    what a way to start the blog, yes? since i am working backwards, please allow me to greedily say i am so very glad you got well and continued to throw us your slices of wonderful. speaking of... that fried sage in the salad... how in the world could i have put fried sage into everything, yet never a salad?!? love love love