Potatoes. They are a high-glycemic and inflammation-producing nightshade. So, what are you to eat in the summer when the new potatoes are ready? And right beside them, the dill and the sugar-snap peas? This is right about the time of year when the world seems poised for you to toss up a hearty supply of some garden-fresh potato salad.
I just returned from an invigorating visit with my sister. She, along with many of my clients, avoids eating foods from the nightshade family, like potatoes, as she notices a direct relationship between these foods and inflammation in her body. Also, she is in beautiful Victoria, British Columbia, Canada—if you don’t know it, picture spectacular ocean views of the Pacific from a city with gorgeous homes, clean streets, and blossom-exploding gardens that have been carefully tended to ensure summer-long beauty. In the past three to four years, I have visited the Pacific Ocean about a half-dozen times. And each time I see it, I feel more drawn to it. The ocean beauty and grandeur is very soothing and calming. As a prairie- and now forest-girl, I could easily sit and watch it all day: boats, waves, kelp, and ripples. The combination of views and the fresh, moist salty sea air makes me feel at peace with one big inhale!
To keep up my sea-glow bliss, I need good, supportive foods, so let me explain. Nightshades can spur inflammation, and common nightshade foods include potatoes, tomatoes, and peppers. We don’t want inflammation! I have clients whose arthritic pain has completely vanished once they have removed these foods from their diet. Some have even called it a miracle! Even people who experience stiffness in their joints and muscles can experience relief by eliminating nightshades.
If we’ve met, you know that I advocate eating a low-glycemic diet: that means avoiding foods that are high-glycemic. (These foods will cause a spike in blood sugar, setting off a host of chain reactions that, over time, can lead to weight gain and make you feel awful.)
Now we’re back to the summer garden-produce and salty-air-bliss issue: you have to avoid potatoes to keep your blood sugar stable and to keep your aches and pains at bay; and in some cases simply because “Sue said so” and you know you will have to show her your food diary!
So what do you do?
Make no-potato Potato Salad. My sister and I whipped this up for lunch/supper one afternoon after our daily two-hour ocean walk. It was delicious, low-glycemic, gluten-free, and tasted just like potato salad.
And the secret ingredient?
Cauliflower! Cauliflower can be substituted for potatoes in many recipes. Try it, and let me know what your body says!
1 head cauliflower, broken and chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
1 bunch radishes, sliced
5 green onions, or one small onion, finely chopped
2 small bunches parsley, finely chopped
4 eggs, hardboiled and chopped
5 sugar snap peas, chopped (optional)
2 dill pickles, finely chopped
2 Tbsp fresh dill, chopped (or 1 tsp dried)
chives, chopped (garnish)
4 Tbsp Vegenaise (it’s gluten-free!) or mayonnaise
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
2 Tbsp dill pickle juice
½ tsp sea salt, more to taste
freshly ground pepper
Lightly steam the cauliflower until just crunchy tender, but not soft, and cool in fridge.
Combine all other vegetables in a bowl. Add cauliflower and gently toss. Mix dressing in a separate bowl then add to vegetables and gently mix. Garnish with chives. Refrigerate. Then bring your inflammation-free, low-glycemic self and a bowlful to the table and tuck in!
What do you think: a lot like potato salad, isn’t it? Share your thoughts in the comments!