Rounds, Roots and Shoots: A Vernal Salad

potato saladA quick post to share what I am looking forward to once our Spring Cleanse is complete: Baby New Potato & Asparagus Salad with Marcona Almonds and Micro Greens. It’s crunchy, salty, moist, hearty yet light and fresh, and sweet in an Ayurvedic way. As any meal should, it inspires all the senses, incorporates all six tastes and harmonizes the best of a local harvest.

potato salad

Baby New Potato & Asparagus Salad with Marcona Almonds & Micro Greens

Salad
8-10 Baby New Potatoes
10-12 very fresh Asparagus Stalks
1 Zucchini
3-4 Spring Onions
1/2 c chopped Dill
1 c Marcona Almonds (Trader Joe’s sells them roasted with Rosemary)
1/2 c Microgreens

Dressing
1 clove Garlic
1 t Dijon
1 T Mayo (can be Vegan)
2-3 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Lemon juiced
1 T Apple Cider Vinegar
a dusting of Red Pepper (my favorite is a gift from my sister: Aleppo Chile Pepper from The Spice House)
Black pepper, to taste
Himalayan Salt, to taste

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the potatoes and cook about 15-20 minutes, until a fork easily slides through the middle. Meanwhile, if you have a double cooker or a steamer, put that on top of the boiling potatoes and blanch the asparagus for a 3-4 minutes only. Otherwise you can drop them into boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Rinse the asparagus immediately with cold water and place in a bowl of ice water. When the potatoes are done, drain and put them in a bowl of ice water too.

Slice the zucchini thin and cut the rounds into quarters, so they are mini bite-size. Slice the spring onions all the way up into the green. Add the zucchini, spring onions, almonds and dill to a salad bowl and set aside.

Mix up the dressing by mincing the garlic. I always make my dressings in a jar because with a lid on tight, you can really give it a good shake and prove to the world that even oil and vinegar can sometimes mix. So put your garlic into a small jar with the juice of half the lemon and the rest of the ingredients. Shake until it is creamy. Taste and adjust seasonings.

Drain and dry the potatoes and asparagus and cut into small bite size pieces. Toss together with the zucchini, spring onions and dill. Give the dressing a good vigorous blend and pour onto the salad. Taste and adjust. I found mine needed the juice of the entire lemon.

Serve on a bed of lettuce with a carefree sprinkling of microgreens.

Options: Chopped, hard-boiled egg; avocado slices; sun-dried tomatoes for that bit of sour; sunflower seeds for added crunch; garden-fresh snap peas for even more sweet green; basil, cilantro, or mint for more savory zing. This salad is really happy company to just about any of Spring’s edible delights so let your garden or your local farmer inspire your whims.

bhava scarfing potato salad

My husband likes it, and I hope you like it, too!

spring salad

 

What you are looking forward to now that Spring is here?

Namaste!

Anatomy Of A Craving

Do you ever have cravings?

                               Is that a stupid question?

So, what are yours?

                                                                                                          I’ll tell you mine…

Sour Cream and Onion Kettle Chips

Yes, Potato Chips. But not just any old chip. All Natural Kettle Chips, gently cooked in the finest oils, seasoned with the freshest, all natural ingredients, creating chips with deep, rich flavors and fresh-from-the-field character, just as their website saysThe crispy, salty, dill infused, potato earth crunch of these Kettle Chips calls to me from the nearest Market in the sweetest, most promising voice, “Laura, I am here….”

Still, a major new diet study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that potato chips are The Very Worst Diet Offenders. They are demon Numero Uno behind the pound-a-year weight-creep that plagues us as we age. Which is no surprise. Just another reminder that I really have to Say No.

So when it occurs, it’s time to look into the Anatomy of the Craving: to break down the desire to its bare bones, to peel away the outer layers of quick and convenient, dig into its underlying impulse and try to discover a deeper, core truth.

Potatoes are a great source of minerals that can help keep the body cool in summer

“What is it?” I ask myself whenever I hear that persistent call. “What is it that you really desire? What is underneath that craving that might actually be good, perhaps even essential?”

This is a practice of listening called Vichara, from the Yoga tradition. It is a form of self-enquiry that lovingly gives attention to the desires, thoughts, emotions that we’ve grown to resist, dislike or disassociate. Instead of fighting against or guiltily succumbing, we wrap our awareness around the thought, feeling or sensation. We “listen to it” until it calms, until the inner experience is quiet enough to be able to hear what is needing to be heard.

Almost always, down under the noise, there is something wise, true, intimate and pure. Absolutely always, when followed to its completion, the practice provides deeper self-understanding, fosters self-compassion, and in time, reduces cravings.

So I listen.

Summer Potato Salad

Cravings are few and far between now, but when the desire does arise, it is almost always the same. I have, therefore, investigated its source many times. Usually, I interpret it as a need for Grounding/Potatoes, Hydration/Oils, and Electric Energy/Minerals and Salts. Inspired by the voice of that inner wisdom, home in my “kitchen lab,” I then enjoy inventing a recipe to satisfy the craving, and hopefully, keep me from landing in one of those diet studies as a statistic!

This summer, satisfaction has come with this delicious Potato Salad that can be made Vegan by using a Vegan Mayonnaise like Spectrum’s, or one you make yourself, and by replacing the eggs with Tofu: about half a block, drained and chopped into cubes.

Click for Print Version

Grounding, tonifying, mineral-rich, refreshing and reassuring, this salad packs substance. It can even serve as a meal unto itself. Hearty and wholesome ~ just the way cravings like to be handled.

Perfect for a Summer Picnic with Avocado and #GF Rice Chips

Ayurvedically, the primary tastes of this meal are Sweet and Bitter and the Action is Cooling, so it is perfect for a Summer picnic. We had it for lunch yesterday served on a bed of Red Leaf Lettuce.

We’d love to hear about your cravings. Please post it in the Comments below as I’d love to dissect its anatomy and even, in a future blog, invent for you a healthier, tastier substitute!
Potato Salad Glee

Learning to listen and love your cravings, needs, desires, and to respond with intelligence and delight is what my Ayurvedic Nutrition & Cooking Classes are all about! I invite you to join us August 7th, 11 am. More details, including the Menu for our Summer Feast, is at DeepYoga.com

Namaste!