One of the pickiest eaters I have ever known – an adorable little Chilean girl that I nannied, would still curl up and breathe in the goodness of one of our favorite meat-and-potato soups on cool evenings.
In the village, a warm steaming bowl of potato soup has the same power to comfort hungry bellies – as it does in other regions of the world.
One of the first foods that I ‘shared’ with the village – was the joy of mashed potatoes.
Starches and sugars – like the ones contained in potatoes of all varieties – are one of the most important components of the human diet. Potatoes have the natural ability to be comforting, and memorable.
Potato roots thrive in most environments where they are planted – from the Northern Hemispheres to the sub-tropics – and forgivingly can still be settled into regions where the weather is too wet or dry – because potato vines perform well in pots.
On this blog, we’ve already shared so many stories about different varieties of foods – especially potatoes – that help village communities avoid famine.
As Thanksgiving is coming up, we hope to find you, our reader, full of all of the good anticipatory feelings of that big fluffy spoon of buttery mashed potatoes present at your dinner tables – and share some savory holiday potato recipes.
The variety of potato that is common in the village – is not as easy to peel as an Idaho potato, but otherwise share the same appearance and taste.
Even those difficult-to-peel potatoes have a special place at our dinner table in the village – and are still as delicious by the time they reach the table.
In fact, now that the children have become so accustomed to the practice of preparing and sharing potatoes – it is difficult to have a holiday without them – they are missed.
For the children in the village, it’s like – “Aunty? Aren’t we going to make the potatoes?”
I have to turn to our donors to try to fund some of their holiday favorites, and pray they will come through.
One of the most common varieties of potato state-side, is the Idaho potato – which has an interesting food history – and the ability to be comforting, and nourishing.
There has even been a controversial museum opened to commemorate the importance of – specifically Idaho potatoes – as a food source – in Blackfoot, Idaho.
That said, no one can live well-nourished, on potatoes alone.
Other foods are necessary to meet all nutritional requirements.
I would consider any table that scorned potatoes as highly suspicious – what conditions could possibly cause one to not desire potatoes? What could a potato do to upset anyone’s abdominal norms or preferred tastes?
Potatoes are easy to eat a lot of – but are also forgiving – and are full of the carbohydrates that digest easily, and are more filling when paired with a protein source.
In many starvation syndromes, one can witness babies that have been fed too many potatoes – and not enough protein – which leaves the children in conditions like kwashiorkor until their nutrition can be changed.
For example, in Romanian orphanages – in an attempt to save money, officials began to feed the babies starchy potatoes instead of milk. This shortage of protein and nutrients caused social mal-development as well as physical effects and weaknesses amongst the children, like stunting – and encouraged competition. Children have to be properly fed, nourished – and socialized in order to develop healthy lifestyles. Babies who are rescued from these conditions take a while to recoup – but are always worth saving.
So if the original Thanksgiving were considered a historical meal, in the same spirit of a eucharist of starchy, white potato bread, it’s that every nation needs a ritual to produce more potatoes – more than they need protein sources like shark meat at their dinner tables.
My son and I love a potato soup we call ‘hash’ which is a simple soup with browned ground beef, potato wedges, garlic and onions – and the hummus mashed potatoes are another option of mixing potatoes with a vegetarian protein source (imagine – flavorful garlic hummus mashed into your potatoes – like butter.)
Potatoes – also need potatoes. It’s alright to have a double-serving, and they don’t come recommended by the teaspoon.
If ‘man cannot live by bread alone’, nor can he live on potatoes – alone.
That said, protein sources are available – all over the world.
And most of them go well – with potatoes.
So if you are hungry –
– eat potatoes.
Those sweet carbs digest quickly down into sugars that fill your body and heart with good feelings.
If you want a second-helping on a budget – try some potato pancakes with molasses for dessert – and a nice glass of sparking red wine, or light dessert celebratory champagne -and enjoy the faith and triumph of healthy dessert conversation.
I pray that potatoes and good feelings – and good conversation – are a part of your holiday season, as we hope they will also be on our table in the village.
Check out any potato recipe on this page and share with your friends.
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Love potatoes? Have faith? Need more meaning in your fun conversations around your holiday dinner tables? Feel free to share your stories here, today: