Fried Sage Leaves

Usually by late October there has been a snowstorm to wipe out all of the herbs in my garden. As our climate changes, even in early fall, I now not only have tender flowers surviving but I am still harvesting an overabundance of things like sage, fennel, horehound, oregano and calendula. Sage has a powerful flavor that works well in some savory dishes. A few desserts like that pear sweat bread that I made last year. In other words it is easy to run out of things to do with it. This a a great recipe for using up this herb late in the herbal year. You will need to have some very large fat leaves to start with.

Fried Sage Leaves

Harvest a couple dozen very large sage leaves. Leave the long stems attached. Make sure that they are clean and dry.

In a medium measuring bowl measure out 1 cup of flour. A gluten free four mixture will also work well. Maybe a combo of brown rice with garbanzo or urad dal finely ground.

1 tsp of baking soda

1/2 tsp of baking powder

1 tsp of salt

Mix well and set aside

In a small bowl whisk together two egg yolks with 1 TBSP of olive oil.

Mix this liquid in with your flour mixture. Add in 1/2 cup of warm beer and continue to mix until it resembles pancake batter.

In another bowl whip the two egg whites into soft peaks.

Fold the whites into the batter. Thin to the consistency of crepe batter with a very small amount of cold water.

In a large cast iron skillet or wok, heat up 6 TBSP of coconut oil on medium heat.

Use tongs to grab a sage leaf by the stem. Quickly dip it into the batter, lightly coating it on both sides. Drop it into the hot oil and fry until golden brown on both sides, using the tongs to turn when done. Remove with tongs, shake off excess oil and drain on paper towels. You can probably fry 2-4 leaves at one time. You can add more oil as needed and remove any bits with a slotted spoon so that they do not burn.

Serve immediately while still warm with a bit of ketchup mixed with store bought mango chutney. Mayonnaise is also an optional condiment.

Salvia officinalis

Sage is a shrubby perennial that is native to Europe. It grows well and overwinters even in my climate. In any garden that I have had it establishes itself as a “mother plant”. The stems are square, woody, long, finely haired and often leggy. With time and age my plants become less attractive but more productive in leaves. This herb can be sensitive. If you offend it, neglect it, damage it when harvesting-you may not see it the following year. The downy, oval shaped, crenated, opposite arranged leaves have a “sage” green color. The flowers are purple (sometimes white) tube shaped, two lipped, and grow widely spaced on terminal racemes. High in aromatic essential oils and botanical features clearly place it in the mint family.

Salvia is thought to be good for stress, depression, vertigo, hot flashes, digestive issues, gas, diarrhea, headaches, flu, congestion, menstrual problems, arthritis pain, blood clots, fever, and staph infections. She is a wonderful gargle for laryngitis, gum disease, bad breath, and sore throats. If you need to clear phlegm in any organ this plant is a good choice. As a bath Sage has been used externally to address eczema, insect bites, wounds, acne, rashes, and poison ivy/oak, dandruff, and vaginal discharge. There is a long history of using this plant as a symbol of wisdom, clarity, longevity, purification and protection. I like hanging bundles of the fresh herb in my house, washing the floors with the tea, or burning dried leaves to clean out energy from a space.

Parts used: Leaves

Energetics:bitter, dry, pungent, warming


Spiritual/Emotional Uses-to remove negative energy, disturbances and bad luck. Helpful when one is struggling with the natural process of aging.

Contraindications:Large does in pregnancy. Do not use while nursing as it may dry up your milk supply. Do not use in therapeutic doses long term.

Published by blackbirdsbackyard

My backyard botanical pharmacy is located in Boulder Colorado. I began studying herbal medicinewhen I was 12 years old. In college I studied subjects like anthropology, microbiology, anatomy and physiology, After graduation I decided to go to midwifery school. I attended births and had a small practice until I retired early in order to be a mother full time. I have always had an herb garden, gathered plants and made my own healing formulas with plants. Over the last 30 years there have been many teachers and I have attended dozens of workshops. I am one of those people who is always reading, studying and learning. In 2019 I was called to practice as an herbalist professionally, using "plant spirit medicine" and bio-energetic ( 5 element)healing techniques. I feel that there is a big need in the community for my skills and talents. I hope to inspire others to start their own backyard pharmacies as a solution to species extinction and the healthcare crisis in America. Healing has also become a spiritual practice and way for me to feel balanced and connected with nature. I consult with clients in person, teach classes (adults and kids), give tours of my garden and offer apprenticeships. Health, joy, meaning, and support are everyone's birthright.

%d bloggers like this: