I was fortunate enough to get the chance to work alongside Indika for a couple of hours. A dark room set with two long wooden benches, concrete floor and some simple shelving stacked with large trays. He begins work at 2 a.m and works through to the following morning. Baking over a thousand loaves and pastries alone apart from one mixer. Indika’s kitchen companion, heavily dusted with flour, works in the far corner.
Japanese pagoda. Quiet serenity.
Freshly picked tea leaf tips of the Camellia bush.
A mixture of ground kurakkan, rice flour, caramelised kithul and salt, combined to make a dough. Damp Kenda leaves sandwich the brown sticky dough and Pani Pol a mixture of shredded coconut, cardamon, kithul treacle and Jaggery, sometimes a little clove. Then streamed for around half an hour. #backinbodynotinspirit #srilanka
Little green parcels of banana leaf with rice cooked in a spiced meat stock. Curry, Dutch meatballs, shrimp paste and plantain. Steamed and served roadside. #backinbodynotinspirit #srilanka
Composed & peaceful.
A mixture of ground the kurrabkkan, rice flour, caramelised kithul and salt is combined to make a dough. Damp Kenda leaves sandwich the brown sticky dough and Pani Pol a mixture of shredded coconut, cardamon, kithul treacle and Jaggery sometime a little clove. Then streamed for around half an hour.
Devilled crab. #notetoselfweargoggles
Choon paan or tune bread.
The tinny shrill of Beethoven’s Für Elise is the call sign of the sellers with their freshly baked bread. Tuk-tuks piled with high-top loaves, white yeasty buns and pastries egg-washed encasing a fiery filling. In the afternoon, the call comes again when they carry sweet, sticky jam buns and kimbula bunnis, a crocodile shaped bun, dusted with sugar crystals, best eaten with tea. #backinbodynotinspirit #srilanka
Audrey and a cinnamon quill.
The cinnamon man.
Gripping a brown branch he explains that the tree needs to be over three years old to be harvested. He begins by cutting down into the bark, hastily removing the outer skin. In the palm of his hand he crushes the discarded bark into crumbs explaining that this is distilled to make oil. Here it has a concentrated sweetness. Rubbing the stripped stem with a well used brass rod he explains that this helps loosen the inner bark. Then he begins to cut long strips using the point of a sharp knife, scrolling around the branch. Effortlessly, he eases off a sheet of brown fragile damp bark. Left to dry it curls in the sun to become a cinnamon quill.