Mindful eating, or offering full awareness to the food on our plates by bringing all five senses to the table, is a skill we can all sharpen. Each and every bite won’t suddenly be elevated to some ethereal experience, but you may find that tuning in, especially to those first couple tastes, changes your eating habits in subtle, yet meaningful ways. Taste memories become stronger, smells and textures richer and ultimately you may feel more satisfied, more filled and fulfilled, with the amount of food your body needs.
Mindful eating is a way to connect with yourself, your body, your needs, and your food. Start small: take three deep, conscious breaths (inhale, exhale) before your next meal or snack. Smell your food as your breath in, ground yourself in the moment as you breathe out. Three breaths. It takes no more than 30 seconds. Give it a try. Oh, and this recipe too.
Salty olives, bright juicy lemon, bittersweet licorice-y tarragon, and tender artichokes join perfectly cooked, creamy yellow potatoes in this refreshing riff on a picnic staple, best enjoyed with the sun on your face and a breeze in your hair.
Tarragon and Lemon Potato Salad with Artichokes and Olives
Adapted from Field of Greens: New Vegetarian Recipes from the Celebrated Greens Restaurant
Makes about 8 servings as a side dish
- 3 pounds small yellow organic potatoes, scrubbed clean
- 1 cup jarred marinated artichoke hearts, roughly chopped
- ½ cup pitted Kalamata olives, roughly chopped
- 2 or more handfuls baby spinach or other tender green, roughly chopped
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
- 1 small sweet onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 lemon, juice and zest
- 2 Tbsp fresh tarragon, chopped
- ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 tsp hot sauce (I used Frank’s Red Hot, meow!)
1. Place potatoes in a large pot and cover with cold water by 1 inch. Salt water generously. Place pot on stove over high heat and bring to a boil.
2. Meanwhile, in a medium mixing bowl, combine all dressing ingredients. Allow to sit for at least 15 minutes to soften onion and garlic flavors.
3. Check potatoes for doneness every couple of minutes by piercing one with a knife. Potatoes are done when knife slides in, but potato does not fall apart. Air on the side of slightly hard, as they continue to cook after removing from the heat. Drain potatoes and set aside. Prepare remaining ingredients.
4. Once slightly cooled, cut potatoes into 1-inch chunks and peel if desired (my potatoes’ peels were practically sliding off after boiling). Combine still-warm potatoes with the dressing in a large serving bowl. Fold in artichokes, olives, and spinach. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Note: This salad tastes best after a little time so the potatoes can take on the flavors of the dressing and the spinach can wilt slightly. A couples hours in the fridge should do the trick.