Lime Pickle

(makes about 1 quart jar; 15 minutes + a few weeks of preserving time)

Tart, spicy, and salty, with a hint of aromatic spices, lime pickle is a wonderful complement to your meal. I first encountered a simple version of preserved limes in Little Women, where the schoolgirls had been banned from eating them. I had to learn more about why pickled limes might be banned:

“…they were sold from glass jars on top of candy-store counters, and some families even bought them by the barrel. Because the import tariff for pickled limes was quite low – importers fought to keep them classed as neither fresh fruit nor pickle – children could buy them cheaply, often for a penny apiece. Kids chewed, sucked, and traded pickled limes at school (and not just at recess) for decades, making the limes the perennial bane of New England schoolteachers. Doctors tended to disapprove of the limes…in 1869 a Boston physician wrote that pickled limes were among the “unnatural and abominable” substances consumed by children with nutritional deficiencies.” Parents, however, seemed generally content for children to indulge themselves in the pickled-lime habit.” – Pickling, Linda Ziedrich

Since pickled limes are quite salty, be sure to pair them with curries that are less so, for a beautifully balanced meal.

8 limes
1/4 c. kosher salt
1/4 c. vegetable oil
1 t. black mustard seed
1 t. fennel seed
1 t. fenugreek seed
2 stalks curry leaves (about two dozen leaves)
1 t. cayenne (optional)
1 t. turmeric
1/4 c. lime juice (plus more as needed)

1. Quarter limes. Rub salt into limes, then transfer limes to sterilised glass jars. Seal and let sit for three days; once a day, open the jars and press the limes down, squeezing juice out. At the end of three days, the rinds should have yellowed, and the limes should be submerged in juice; if not fully submerged, add more lime juice to cover.

NOTE: At this point, you have preserved limes, and you can eat them as is. If you let them sit for a few more weeks, the flavors will mellow and blend harmoniously. Many cuisines use preserved limes; it’s common in that case to remove the flesh of the lime (which will be very salty), and only retain the rind / pith, which may be sliced and used in various dishes. Or, continue on with your entire limes to make lime pickle.

2. In a sauté pan, heat oil on high, add mustard seeds, and cook until they start to pop.

3. Turn down heat to medium and add remaining spices (if you’d prefer a smoother result, you may roughly grind spices before adding), preserved limes, and lime juice. Cook 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally. (If you’d prefer a brighter, more fresh-fruit flavor, you may omit cooking the limes here, and simply pour the tempered spice mix over the limes in a bowl, combining well.)

4. Turn seasoned limes into sterilized glass jars, pressing down to compress. Set aside for 2 weeks to develop flavors; once a day, invert the jars so the seasoned liquid may permeate all the limes. Serve as an accompaniment to rice and curries.

NOTE: Once opened, store in the fridge for up to six months, or follow proper canning procedures for long-term pantry storage. When storing, a layer of oil on top of the limes will aid in preservation.

Ocean Cookies

All done with my ocean cookies. 🙂 I love how the silvery bits look like light glinting off the water.

Beetroot Cocktail

(Yes, I bought myself the cutest little mushroom glass on the planet for this recipe. I wasn’t sure I was up for a mushroom cocktail (which are apparently a thing), but beets are nice and earthy…)


Beetroot Cocktail

Delicious, yet also full of healthy nutrients. This will make enough for several cocktails.

2 c. beets, peeled and roughly chopped
2 c. coconut milk
1/4 c. sugar or jaggery
1/4 c. lime juice
1 t. ground cardamom


1. Combine juice ingredients in blender and liquefy. (For a thinner cocktail, add up to 2 c. water.)

2. For each serving, stir 1-2 oz. arrack into 3/4 c. juice. Serve cold.

Optional spicy variation: Some chopped green chili would go nicely with this!

A Little Tricky

It can be a little tricky working with embossed rolling pins, because if the dough is too chilled and hard, it’s tough to press enough for a good impression, but if it’s too soft and warm, it just smooshes and tears. With my shortbread dough, I usually find that 15 minutes in the fridge is about right:

– make dough & preheat oven
– put a sheet of parchment paper on a large cutting board
– pat out half the dough
– add a second sheet of parchment paper and roll flat to desired thickness
– chill 15 minutes in fridge
– remove top sheet of parchment paper and roll with embossing pin
– cut into squares (or as desired)
– slide parchment paper with embossed cookies to baking sheet (I like the insulated ones for even baking) and
– put baking sheet in fridge for another 15 minutes — don’t skip this, or the dough will spread too much and you’ll lose a lot of definition
– bake 12-15 minutes

Making cookies this way is a bit of a process; I did a batch last night, and I think it took about 2 hours total. But I was reading a great book, so it was mostly do a thing, set a timer, read for a while, do a thing, set a timer, read for a while, repeat. Pleasant and peaceful way to spend an evening. With a nice big cookie as reward when I was done. 🙂

Vegan Serendib Kickstarter Is Closed

I meant to post a reminder about the Kickstarter before it closed, but I forgot! Apologies, folks. But you can still pre-order Vegan Serendib from our site, no worries! Just visit:

The Kickstarter did very well, with 216 backers pledging $9,254 in the end (initial goal of $2500). I feel like I basically know how to do this Kickstarter thing now, with 5 projects, all successfully funded. Thank you all for your support — you folks know how to make a girl feel loved. 🙂

More soon — I have one final recipe to draft today, and then it’ll be time to start hunting recipe testers and working on interior design. If you’re interested in recipe testing, let me know — I’m asking that you test at least 5 recipes and send me your comments, in exchange for an ebook (of either Vegan or Feast, your choice) that you can gift to a friend or family member if you like.…/vegan-serendib-a-sri…

Humble Finish

I have just one more item on the list of recipes I was going to make for Vegan Serendib — beet juice. Humble finish! But I think it will be tasty…

Going to be weird to be done. Well, done unless I add a few more recipes. Must. Resist. Temptation.

Cranberry-Rhubarb Chutney

(20-25 minutes, makes 1 quart)

Kevin loves both cranberries and rhubarb, so I decided to combine them, just for him. You can enjoy this chutney right away, or put it up and save it to pull out at the holidays. Festive! As with any chutney, adjust to your taste — you can make it a little sweeter, a little tangier, a little spicier.

NOTE: Rhubarb leaves are toxic and humans should never ingest them. Please resist the urge to save them for a salad.

1 red onion, chopped fine
2 T chopped ginger
1 c. apple cider vinegar
about 2 c. cranberries
1 c. chopped dates or golden raisins
1 stick cinnamon
1/2 t. crushed red pepper flakes
2 T jaggery or dark brown sugar (or more to taste)

about 1 c. chopped rhubarb stalks

1. Combine all ingredients except rhubarb in a medium pot, bring to a boil, then turn down heat and simmer 10-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until cranberries have popped and you have a sauce-like consistency.

2. Add rhubarb (if you add it at the beginning, it’ll lose all definition) and cook an additional 5 minutes, stirring. Rhubarb should be soft and cooked through.

Serve room temperature; chutney is a fabulous sandwich spread. Will keep for two weeks in the fridge, or may be canned for long-term storage.