What does it mean mindfulness with food?
It means to still our minds and be present in each moment, this moment is be present before, during and after making a meal. I want to share this important practice from the Japanese culture so we can cultivate in our cultures . I believe that by being mindful our experience with food changes completely. In the Japanese culture there is something called Zen. Zen is the moment when you’re present 💯 … and what better way to practice being mindful and present than by cooking and eating. In this way, a meal can indeed be an enlightening experience.
The term “Zen meal” has been expanded in Western culture to mean any kind of simple meal, but a true Zen meal, in addition to being simple and elegant, should include an element of reflection and mindfulness. A Zen meal is one in which not only the meal is simple and prepared in a mindful way, but also every aspect of the preparation, from shopping and cooking to setting the table and eating, is done slowly, methodically, and with consciousness.
I am reading a book called WabiSabi by Beth Kempton, is about the simplicity in life and how we can honor the places and the meals we have. In the japanese culture , the Zen meditation is a way of obtaining deep inner peace. I believe taking in consideration this practices , help us to be more grateful and enjoyful with food and family. Since the primary focus of the Zen meditation is being still and clearing your mind, meals tend to be quite simple.
I know sometimes is hard , specially in our modern world, it can be difficult to slow down and eat in a precise and mindful way, when we have our kids, we are busy with our work, housework our partners and other important things, so being aware of each step of the process it can be a challenge it can also seem strange to eat in community yet in silence. But this might be all the more reason to try.
Sometimes what you want and need to do after a long day of work is put your feet up, watch television, and eat a delivery pizza and totally zone out.
But when you can, consider eating a meal in the Zen way. There’s great value in taking time to taste every moment of your meal.
How can you create a mindful meal- Zen meal with your kids and family?
🌿 Playing soft music to help you slow way down.
🌿Cherish: Take time to honor every ingredient. Think about where it came from and all the people that were responsible for the long trip to your kitchen.
🌿Do Not Compare: In a mindful kitchen , you do not compare or judge one apple as better than another. Every piece of food is unique unto itself, and every item of food is to be cherished without comparison
🍀Be Present: Every movement within a Zen kitchen is done with consciousness. to chop vegetables, put them in the pan, mix them together. Enjoy every single step of this preparation.
🌱Be Sincere: When preparing the food, use your humility, your sincerity, and your dedication without losing your attention or concentration. Be conscious of what every moment calls for, and go in that direction.
🍀Appreciate: Take a moment to appreciate the colors, aromas, and most of all, the time and energy that the person who cook for you.
🌴Be Conscious of Others: If you’re eating with others, take a moment to be aware of each person, even if you’re eating in silence. Beneath conversation, there’s a deeper and more profound connection—soul to soul. Find and feel that connection.
🌴Focus: Eat slowly with attention on each bite. Become aware of the richness of flavor and texture, the way the food feels as it enters into your body, and the way your body is responding.
🍃Completion: At the completion of the meal, bow in honor of the meal and in honor of everyone who enjoyed it with you. You might even want to take time to have folks share their perceptions and what thoughts, memories, and emotions emerged for them during the meal.
Country potato salad
Zen meals a beautiful and easy practice that we can teach our kids to embrace every day and everywhere.
Our ingredients are the most typical in my home country Colombia this is a creative way to prepare a potato salad with little different ingredients, so tasty that now I often make it even when I don’t have leftovers. It’s so good that this could be the Holy Grail of potato salads!The almonds and lemon zest are my favorite part. They’re unexpected and add a great depth of flavor to the dish.
2 lbs. boiled red potatoes, cut into quarters
½ lb. blanched green beans
½ cup toasted almonds, roughly chopped
1 red bell pepper, cut into thin 2-inch strips
⅓ cup diced red onion
1 tsp. zest from one lemon
2 tsp. whole-grain mustard
½ tsp. sea salt
2 cloves garlic, crushed
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar
⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil
Preheat the oven to 180C. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. When the water reaches a boil, toss in the trimmed beans and cook until slightly cooked , about 3 minutes. Fish out with a strainer or tongs, and immediately shock them in an ice-water bath (this will keep them green and crisp). Add the potatoes to the boiling water and cook until cooked through, about 20 minutes, depending on their size. Drain and run cold water over the potatoes. While the potatoes cook, place the almonds on a baking sheet and toast in the oven until fragrant, about 10 minutes. Remove the almonds from the oven, and when cool enough to touch, chop them. The nuts will get crunchier as they cool. Meanwhile, slice the bell pepper, dice the onion, and zest the lemon. When the potatoes are cooked and cooled, chop them into bite-sized pieces. Drain the beans from the ice bath and cut into 2-inch pieces. In a large bowl, combine everything together and toss with the vinaigrette.
In a small bowl, mix the mustard, salt, and garlic together. Add the vinegar and combine. Slowly whisk in the olive oil to make an emulsion.