In my quest to find tasty, inexpensive foods to fuel long training rides, I revisited potatoes. What I found was a savory, flavorful way to enjoy a long ride. Small, waxy potatoes cooked, seasoned, and tossed with some herbs is like having a potato salad in your pocket. Brilliant!
Here’s how to do it:
Find the smallest, waxiest potatoes you can, red, gold, purple, whatever. If the potatoes are too big, you can cut them in half or quarters. Cook by either boiling in a pot or steaming until just tender. Drain and allow to cool until you can handle them comfortably. At this point you can try to peel them, which will reduce the fiber and allow the the seasoning to stick better. If peeling is too tedious, leave them and cut them in half or quarters.
While the potatoes are still warm, toss them with a dash of salt, pepper, garlic powder, and a few drops of lemon juice. Then let them cool. Be conservative with the seasonings if you’re planning on eating these during training. Not everything that tastes good in the kitchen works on a long ride.
Then eat them as is, or choose one of the following for a little more flavor:
Toss potatoes with the herb(s) right before serving, otherwise the acid in the lemon juice will turn the herbs gray and some flavor will be lost.
For eating while training, you can package them in a small plastic bag or container. For cyclists, you can put them in a small cup and stuff the whole thing in your jersey pocket and nibble as you go. Potatoes have about 450 calories per pound cooked, so a half pound of potatoes would be similar to a couple of gels or bottles of sports drink.
Make extra potatoes and add chopped veggies like cucumber, bell pepper, onion, carrot etc. and turn into a recovery potato salad. Serve it over greens. Stuff the whole mess in a pita or wrap in a tortilla. You get the picture. Real food for real athletes.
Train. Eat. Repeat.