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The Hugger Mugger Yoga Blog

Celebrate The Journey

  • Bakasana: Not Just a Party Trick

    It’s the season of colored lights, familiar carols and full calendars. In December we’re often juggling family, friends, gift-buying and parties. The dizzying pace can often leave us feeling unbalanced. Yoga has remedies for this. My favorites are Restorative practice, long Savasanas and balancing poses.

    Balancing poses not only teach the extremely valuable skill of balancing, but they can also collect a fragmented mind. They require concentration, so they teach us about concentration.

    At the mention of balancing poses, we often think of Vrksasana (Tree Pose) or Hasta Padangusthasana (Standing Big-Toe Pose). But standing on one foot is...

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  • Meatless Monday: Celery Root Soup with Granny Smith Apples

    Soup season continues today with an elegant, satisfying gourmet-style soup. Bonus: it’s very simple and uses only a small number of ingredients.

    Until I made this soup I’d never cooked with celery root before. I’d seen it at Whole Foods and other fancier grocery stores, but I had no idea what to do with it. Celery root definitely looks a bit imposing in its wabi sabi earthiness.

    I’m always game to try something new though, and this soup, from The Conscious Cook by chef Tal Ronnen, paid off handsomely. I’ve made this soup for a number of holiday...

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  • Trying Hot Yoga? Here Are Some Tips

    As the year comes to a close, most of us have one major priority: finding just the right gift for each person on our list. A close second could be finding a way to maintain fitness while navigating the season’s traditional celebration of copious amounts of food.

    The key is to remember to move our bodies, even as we enjoy our holiday treats. But the weather can be a bit nippy for a brisk walk. So why not warm up AND move your body by trying a Hot Yoga class?

    Most Hot Yoga classes take place in a...

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  • Meatless Monday: Roasted Cauliflower

    Winter is officially here, at least in my part of the world. I'm watching snow come down as I sit at my laptop. My drafty old house—that will be turning 100 in January—is not all that warm. So it’s a good time to start using the oven to give my house a little warmth boost.

    Cauliflower, a veggie that was once maligned as boring, has enjoyed a renaissance in the past few years. It’s being used as a grain substitute—think cauliflower rice. I’ve also seen ground cauliflower used as the base of a pizza crust.

    I’ll admit that...

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  • Meatless Monday: White Bean/Rosemary Soup

    One of my favorite things about winter is that it’s soup season. I’m not talking about soups of the salty canned variety. I’m talking about slow-simmering homemade soup, the kind that fills your house with the fragrance of comfort.

    As a mostly vegan vegetarian, beans are my staple protein. I love legumes of all types: black, white, pinto, Anasazi, lentils, aduki, split peas—you name it. Of the white variety, cannellini beans are my favorite. They blend well with so many different types of flavors. One of my favorite pairings is white beans and rosemary.

    As it happens, my...

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  • At Peace with Change

    It’s hard not to feel betrayed by your body when you get sick.

    I’m not talking about getting a cold or the flu, severe allergies, chicken pox, measles or mumps, although these conditions pose challenges of their own.

    It’s when you find yourself facing a life-changing illness—cancer, say, or renal failure, or a host of neuro-muscular disorders—that you might think of life’s changes as unfair.

    And if you practice yoga, you may feel betrayed by the changes in your body, as well as by the very practice that you expected to keep you healthy.

    This sense...

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  • Relax on a Round Bolster

    When most yoga practitioners think of yoga bolsters, they picture a firm cushion with a wide, flat top—a Standard Bolster. It’s true that Standard Bolsters are favorites at the overwhelming majority of yoga studios. But in some poses, and for some people, a bolster of a different shape might work even better.

    That is why Hugger Mugger carries more than one type of bolster. We’re not all the same, and every pose isn’t exactly the same. If you look in Judith Hanson Lasater’s classic Restorative yoga book, Relax and Renew for example, you’ll see a whole lot of people...

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  • Meatless Monday: Spicy Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

    As the weather cools and the days shorten, warming veggies move front and center. In general, root veggies such as yams, potatoes, onions, beets, turnips, rutabagas, etc. are said to be more grounding than above-ground veggies. Of course, this is not entirely true. Many above-ground veggies ripen in the fall: all types of winter squash and Brussels sprouts, to name a few.

    Over the years, I’ve tried probably at least a half dozen winter squash soup recipes. Some have been simple, for example a savory soup with just four ingredients: butternut squash, yams, miso and water. Others have been...

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  • Vrksasana: Growing Roots

    Trees are our partners in keeping this living, breathing planet alive. We inhale the oxygen that trees exhale, and they inhale the carbon dioxide we exhale. We are inextricably tied together.

    Trees can also teach us about the importance of cultivating roots. While only the trunk, branches and leaves are usually visible to us, the roots of most trees are just as massive as what’s above ground. Knowing that this complex invisible root system is what keeps a tree upright can teach us about grounding our own bodies.

    Vrksasana (Tree Pose) emulates the steady, rooted stance of a...

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  • Meatless Monday: Chickpea Salad

    Back in early November, I wrote about a new delicacy I enjoyed on a meditation retreat last summer: preserved lemon. At the time I promised I’d share a recipe that uses preserved lemon. Today’s the day. In fact, the plate in the photo shows two ways to use preserved lemon. I’ve included both recipes in this post.

    The chickpea salad comes from Spirit Rock Meditation Center. While I don’t know how much of each ingredient they used to make the salad I enjoyed there, I made up my own version using just their ingredient list. Feel free to play...

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