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Yoga, health, wellness, and recipes from YogaDownload.com


Beetroot Pasta
Beetroot Pasta
As you already know I absolutely adore seasonal food, but the season in Estonia is extremely short. Luckily we still have super nice autumn and I can even still pick fresh tomatoes from my balcony garden, but I know that the niceness is going to be over soon. The recipe I share with you today utilizes the best Estonian beetroots, but the even better news is that you can make the pasta with the same beetroot powder that I used as it is available on Amazon. I rarely advertise anything even in Estonia, but this beetroot flour is the next level, so if you get a chance – check it out. Enough with the promo and back to the recipe.

Vegan Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
Vegan Chocolate Zucchini Muffins
Let me introduce the most common way I am cooking. I have an idea or too much of something at home waiting to be used up. So, I browse the web for a perfect recipe. I find several and then decide on one. Almost every time I decide that “this time I will be following the recipe to a t”. And almost every time I end up replacing half the ingredients, and changing the cooking time and ratios. This is what happened this time too. The base recipe is here, and I am sure it is delicious, but I have no way of telling for sure.

Honey Paloma
Honey Paloma
As with most of my recipes during summertime, even my cocktail is inspired by fresh local produce. Not grapefruit or tequila, obviously, but the super fresh honey that I got from my aunt. I don’t usually drink tequila, but I recently went to a restaurant where the bartender mixed a cocktail that matched all my desires perfectly and it was tequila-based, so figured I try my hand mixing a cocktail at home myself. And oh boy it was a success! I’m not sure how I had never had Paloma before, somehow I never even thought about having a tequila-based cocktail instead of my usual favorite, gin.

Chickpea Sesame Cookies
Chickpea Sesame Cookies
If there was a competition for a healthy, yet delicious cookie, these here would definitely be in a running. They are not too sweet, they are gluten-free and completely vegan, and they contain a good amount of protein thanks to using chickpea flour. I sometimes call these hummus cookies as chickpeas and sesame (in a form of tahini for hummus) are the main components for both snacks, but in reality, they don’t taste anything like hummus. Luckily. I know that sweet hummus exists, but it is really not my thing. Now, of course, I started wondering if savory hummus cookies could also be a thing. I think they could, but this needs some extra exploring from my side first. I will keep you posted if my trials turn out to be a success!

Pineapple Smoothie with Oats
Pineapple Smoothie with Oats
Drinking from a hollowed-out pineapple (or any other fruit for that matter) instantly makes me feel like I am on vacation. But instead of a rum-based drink, today my pineapple was filled with a super healthy oat-pineapple smoothie. Still felt like a vacation drink to me, but this might be enhanced by sunny weather. Of course, if you have something better to do with your time than spend 20 minutes carefully taking the flesh out of a pineapple trying to not pierce the skin, feel free to drink from a glass. This is also a good option if using frozen pineapple cubes and the smoothie will be just as delicious, but you just need to get into the vacation mode some other way.

Watermelon Salad with Strawberries, Herbs, and Feta
Watermelon Salad with Strawberries, Herbs, and Feta
I love this time of the year when all the fresh produce is available at the farmers' market. In this salad here, the watermelon is from the market (growing watermelon on the terrace in the city center is too much even for a loco person like I am), and all the herbs, cucumber, and strawberries are from my terrace. I just love going out and picking a little something from one pot and another thing from another. Pure luxury and it does not get any fresher. This salad is something I could eat every day right now. I almost do eat it every day. So light, refreshing, sweet, and also slightly salty from the feta. I do play around with different seeds (sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds) instead of pine nuts and different herbs, but the combination I bought out in the recipe is my absolute favorite.

Zucchini Fries
Zucchini Fries
I don’t know who said it, but I really like the quote “if cauliflower can be pizza, then you can be anything you want!”. It is pretty much the same story here with these fries. Of course, they do not taste like potatoes and this is also not a goal, but they sure are delicious and crunchy (well, for a while at least) and I like them much more than french fries. I don’t know what it is like where you live, but here in Estonia at one point in the summer, we all have way too many zucchinis. This is one of the ways to eat them!

Sesame Soy Cabbage
Sesame Soy Cabbage
For most of the year, I don’t care much for the cabbage. I do eat it in stews, soups, and salads, but I rarely make a main meal out of it. But the fresh spring and early summer cabbages are something else. So juicy and tender, bursting with freshness that I often end up eating the whole thing raw, before I even get a chance to make something out of it. But I also love all cabbages roasted. I am also convinced that roasting cabbages are how you make cabbage-haters like them! Brussel sprouts, kale, cauliflower – in Estonian they are all called cabbages and they are all wonderful roasted! This time, inspired by a recent Masterchef Australia episode, I added a slightly Asian touch to the cabbage. It is not the same recipe they did in the show, as some internet gods have decided that the content of some Australian websites should not be visible in Estonia, so I don’t even know the exact recipe, but it sure looked amazing on TV.

Bloody Mary Smoothie
Bloody Mary Smoothie
Who said that smoothies need to be sweet? I highly recommend giving this one a try. It is also a good way to get in your recommended vegetable portions for a day and you could even blend in some lettuce or spinach leaves to make it extra nutritious. I always find that smoothies need some kind of a creamy element. In sweet versions, I usually use banana for that. In savory versions, avocado works well, making this smoothie creamy and luscious. As tomato is rather watery, I recommend preparing this smoothie right before enjoying it as otherwise, it will split. If you need to prepare it in advance, make sure you shake it well before drinking!

Sugar-Free & Vegan Chocolate Muffins
Sugar-Free & Vegan Chocolate Muffins
Everybody loves chocolate and everybody loves muffins, right? At least everybody I know does. Chocolate muffins do not really scream healthy. You might already know that I like to make otherwise indulgent recipes somewhat more healthy without losing any flavor. I did the same this time by making the muffins 100% plant-based and choosing the oat flour carefully, also gluten-free.

Raw Buckwheat Muesli Bowl
Raw Buckwheat Muesli Bowl
I just got back from a holiday in Jamaica (a fabulous place, definitely go!), and brought a few ripe mangoes with me. So today's breakfast was again my buckwheat muesli, served with fresh ripe mango, Greek yogurt, and some pomegranate seeds. So, so good! Muesli is usually made with oats, but my favorite version does not contain any oats. And buckwheat, at least in Estonia, where I live, is usually considered a savory food. But still, this mildly sweet and crunchy raw buckwheat muesli has been a favorite of mine for a long time now.

Simple Seafood Paella
Simple Seafood Paella
Truth to be told - this is not an authentic Spanish paella but as I saw somebody cooking paella in a movie, I felt I needed to give it a go myself and sooner rather than later, so there was no time for shopping. I needed it right this moment. I somehow always manage to have at least 3 different types of rice, so this was covered. I used risotto rice as this seemed the closest to Spanish rice, but feel free to use Spanish rice as this is used in the original. I also happened to have a classic risotto spice saffron available (even two jars, both unopened) and some frozen seafood too, so an hour after I was done with the movie I, already had a plate full of this delicious treat in front of me. And delicious it is! Classically paella is cooked on a paella pan, which I didn’t have, so I just used a normal frying pan, so no need to panic if you don’t have the right pan – if you don’t plan on becoming a professional paella chef, the normal pan will do just fine.

Meatless Meatballs with Gluten-Free Pasta
Meatless Meatballs with Gluten-Free Pasta
A plant-based diet is more and more popular and even though this type of eating is completely doable (and delicious!) without any meat substitutes, there are still many of those widely available. I eat about 80% plant-based and rarely consume any of the substitutes, but my partner sometimes likes the feeling of eating meat, so I have been trying out some of them. As I haven’t given up meat completely, these products do not trick me to think I am eating meat, but that said – they do taste good! So if you need to cook a meal for somebody who does not believe that a plant-based diet is delicious and filling, then these meat-free balls are a good place to start!

Raw Buckwheat with Broccoli and Beans
Raw Buckwheat with Broccoli and Beans
I do a little cupboard cleanup at least once a year where I try to use up all the odd ends of dry ingredients that I have laying around. The raw buckwheat here is one of these ends, but it does not mean that I do not like raw buckwheat – I do! I just rarely eat it in savory versions as my favorite is buckwheat muesli that I just realized have not even shared with you, so I will fix that soon. But this simple dish here is a quick weeknight dinner that comes together in around 30 minutes and most of this time you don’t need to do anything. Just chop your veggies throw everything in two pots, transfer some of the first pot over to a second one, stir a little and you are done. Easy! You can also substitute almost everything in this meal – cauliflower instead of broccoli? Of course! Adding in zucchini? Why not! Replacing buckwheat with say, quinoa? Surely it would work! Just open your fridge and cupboard, see what you got and get creative!

Virgin Spinach Piña Colada
Virgin Spinach Piña Colada
The recipe is from spring 2020 when we had our first lockdown here in Estonia. I remember it very clearly as I was supposed to be in Jamaica and in Miami, but then life happened, the world became a crazy place, and I still haven’t taken this trip. Maybe this year! Fingers crossed. Anyway, as I had planned a three-week holiday and prepped well with doing all my work for this time beforehand and yoga classes were canceled, I just spent 3 weeks at home cooking, drinking (smoothies mostly, but also cocktails as I was supposed to be on holiday after all), cleaning out all the forgotten corners of my home and binging on I don’t even remember what, but most likely some cooking competition. And here I am almost two years later and I still have not gone on that trip!

Simple & Delicious Brussel Sprouts
Simple & Delicious Brussel Sprouts
Not sure that today’s creation should be called a recipe because it literally is frying up a bunch of brussels sprouts, seasoning them with salt and lemon, and serving with sunflower seeds and cheese. But sometimes the easiest things are the best things in life, right! By the way, did you know that some people might have a true reason behind not liking brussels sprouts – some people have a heightened perception of the bitter taste and brussels have bitter notes and this is why they are not fans of these healthy nuggets.

Passionfruit Jelly Squares
Passionfruit Jelly Squares
These squares are a nice sour pop to finish dinner. Do you know these fancy restaurants where at the end of the meal they bring you petit fours? These squares would be perfect there, so if you wish to feel fancy or surprise your dinner party guests with something extra – make these! They don’t take too long to make, but they definitely impress! I served them along pistachio-filled chocolates and tahini truffles to finish Christmas dinner extra fancy, but they are enough on their own for sure.

Fried Goat Cheese Balls
Fried Goat Cheese Balls
Here is a unique little snack for your next celebration! Everybody knows regular cheese balls, but these are 10 times better! Goat cheese balls! I rarely eat deep-fried food, especially homemade deep-fried food as the amount of oil used is crazy. But these balls are an exception and totally worth it! The zinginess of goat's cheese cuts through the deep-fried fattiness and the balls end up being highly addictive.

Potato, Leek, & White Bean Soup
Potato, Leek, & White Bean Soup
The chillier it gets the more soups and stews find a way to my table. And why wouldn’t they if they are so easy to make and delicious each time! I must admit that even though this type of food is very easy to prepare in bulk, I usually still only cook for one lunch or dinner. But this does not mean that you should cook for each separate meal. Feel free to double or triple the recipe and eat it several days in a row or even freeze it for future quick dinners. I completely understand that cooking is not something that everybody loves to do and if you are one of those people just prep ahead. It is 100 times better to have a few homemade healthy meals waiting for you in the fridge or freezer, than quickly ordering something random from the local fast food joint. Not that there would be anything wrong with enjoying a burger now and then. Oh, and I kept the soup 100% plant-based and did not even add any vegan creams because the potatoes and beans are creamy in nature. But if you like things extra creamy go ahead and add cream cheese or sour cream of your choice right before blending.

Roasted Quinoa & Apple Breakfast Bowl
Roasted Quinoa & Apple Breakfast Bowl
Here in Estonia, the season is slowly changing to autumn and this means loads of produce from vine ripe tomatoes to mushrooms in the forests. And of course, loads of apples. Apples are the superstar here in this breakfast bowl. I never peel apples if I know where they are from – most of the nutrients are directly under the skin and I don’t see any reason to waste them. The other very nutritious part of the apple is its seeds, so I often eat those too. To use in recipes, I still prefer to remove the cores for smoother results.

Filing Chickpea Salad with Tahini Dressing
Filing Chickpea Salad with Tahini Dressing
Chickpeas are one of my favorite ingredients. They are extremely versatile, they work well in curries, vegetable patties, salads, and even in desserts. To be honest, sometimes I eat them straight out of a jar. Not often, but it does happen in some busy times when I don’t even have time to shop for fresh produce. Fortunately, I am quite good with time management and these times do not happen often. Besides – I don’t think that 10 minutes to prep a full meal is that much and this is about how long this simple recipe takes. If you are good with knives you most likely only need 5 minutes to make the salad. But even the most inexperienced cooks should be ready with the salad in 10 minutes. The secret to this recipe lays in the sauce. The combination of tahini, lemon, and yogurt is irresistible with just about anything and I often use it as a dip for fresh cucumber.

Chanterelle Mushroom & Vegetable Soup
Chanterelle Mushroom & Vegetable Soup
Today I invite you to take a trip to your fridge and clean it out properly. I hate food waste and make a fridge clean-out type of dish at least once a month to use up all the odd ends of produce that are still good, but maybe not for very long. I will go for a vacation soon and this means nobody will eat anything out of my fridge for the next few weeks. So everything that is there needs to be used before I leave! I do share a recipe of what exactly went into my soup this time, but feel free to customize. In case you have any other veggies waiting to be used up – go for it! Carrots, potatoes, cauliflower, zucchini. They all work wonderfully! I usually always use onion in the base of my soups, but this time I did not have any. If you do, throw it in with leeks and celery. Adding the vegetables, always try to figure out which ones take the longest to cook and add them in first. If you have something that you don’t wish to puree, maybe it works as a topping? If you are a meat-eater, just crisp up all the odd ends of your sausages and bacon. If you eat cheese, maybe just sprinkle it on top or melt it in. The options are endless and these types of recipes always work out. And in addition to a good meal, you also get some peace of mind because you avoid food waste. Win-win!

Vegan Beet-Chocolate Cake
Vegan Beet-Chocolate Cake
Sometimes the only thing you need is a cake. Feels familiar? So let me introduce you to a chocolate and beetroot cake. No need to be afraid – we do use a lot of beets in this recipe, but you can’t taste it in the result. Also, if you are afraid of too many beets, then just skip the beetroot powder in the frosting (yes, there also is a frosting!) and substitute this with pink pitaya powder or just fresh berries or skip it altogether. The main purpose of the powder here is to color the “cheesecake” frosting into a nice pink-purple color anyway, so if you are happy with white, just go for it. The cake itself is quite moist and decadent anyway and a few of my friends have mentioned that this is the best vegan cake they have ever had. To make it even more luscious, I added a whipped tofu frosting for extra moisture. And of course, I needed to go the extra mile and also candied some beetroot ribbons. For this, I first created a sugar syrup – 1 cup of water and ½ cups of regular sugar. Bring to boil, add beetroot ribbons (or just very thinly cut beetroot slices), and simmer them for 30 minutes until they turn slightly translucent). Then drain them and leave them to cool. I also cooked the rest of the syrup down to beetroot caramel, but I am honestly not sure yet, where or how I will use this.

Healthy Watermelon & Strawberry Slushie
Healthy Watermelon & Strawberry Slushie
This is the easiest recipe ever and I usually don’t even bother writing down recipes this simple, but this drink has been on my menu almost every day this summer, so I figured it makes sense to jot this one down. In Estonia, where I live, we usually have a few weeks of real summer if we are lucky. Estonian summer means something around 70°F for days and 50-60°F during nights, so rather chilly. But this year has surprised us with a real heatwave and we have had the temperatures around and even over 80°F for almost 6 weeks already. This also means that the temperature inside my apartment is constantly around 80°F and this is not so nice anymore... At one point I seriously considered just sleeping in a hammock on my terrace where there is at least a little wind. But generally, I am rather happy with the hot weather.

Soy-Glazed King Oyster Mushrooms
Soy-Glazed King Oyster Mushrooms
Mushrooms are good! One of my favorite things to forage, but of course, spring is not the high season for mushrooms (at least not in Estonia), so today I used king oyster mushrooms. I have made the same recipe with button mushrooms and while still delicious, king oysters work the best here. I like that they are not too watery and of course, the fact that 2 mushrooms are enough to make up dinner for one person helps as they are so simple to prepare. The mushroom recipe itself is very simple too, and I usually always have all the ingredients waiting in my fridge or cupboard.