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Lifestyle

Yoga off the mat. This is the place to find articles about yoga for everyday life.
  • 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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  • 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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  • 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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  • Meatless Monday: Vegan Pumpkin Muffins

    Happy Halloween!

    Perhaps one of the scariest things about Halloween is that it is the unofficial start of the holiday pig-out season. Don’t get me wrong; it’s a lot of fun to dress up and be someone or something else for a day. (When I was in college at Indiana University, Halloween was much more than a day; it was an actual season.) But for kids, it includes the awesome addition of tons of free sweets.

    In the interest of keeping things fun—but somewhat healthy—I’m sharing a recipe for vegan pumpkin muffins in honor of Halloween. This recipe...

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  • In Harmony: Yoga for Musicians

    If you play a musical instrument—including your own voice—you probably know that practicing can take a toll on your body. But practicing is the heart of the matter. You can’t get to that inspiring state of feeling the music flow through you and out your instrument—a sort of musical Samadhi—without a foundation of lots of practice. Every musician knows that this state represents thousands of hours of wood-shedding.

    All that practice can be hard on your body. Each instrument has its unique ergonomic quirks. Violinists and violists often experience neck and shoulder pain. Same for flutists. Other woodwind players...

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  • Meatless Monday: Vegan Pizza Time!

    My backyard tomatoes are no longer ripening on the vine. But they’re in no danger of freezing, so I’m still picking them fresh.

    Because they’re still sweet, I prefer not to make them into sauce just yet. So I decided to make a dinner pizza this week with kale/basil pesto as the base, and put the tomatoes on top. The slight roasting they get as the pizza cooks makes the tomatoes even that much sweeter.

    You can use any kind of pesto as a base. Here’s a vegan version I published a few weeks ago. I used the...

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  • Meatless Monday: Warm Kale Salad

    What do you do with a burgeoning bounty of backyard kale as autumn arrives? Of course, there are many wonderful ways to cook kale. But when you have a LOT of it, and it’s fresh and tender, kale salad is the best.

    While I love raw foods in the summer, when it gets cooler, they don’t provide the internal heat my body needs. So today’s kale salad uses a hot cider vinaigrette to wilt the kale slightly, and make the salad more warming.

    I prefer Tuscan kale (aka Lacinato kale) for salads—not just because it is abundant in...

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  • Meatless Monday: Vegan Pesto

    The basil harvest is an annual marker for me. It means that the garden is winding down. There’s still a bounty of kale, tomatoes and herbs, but I’m turning toward preserving what’s left.

    For some reason, basil does really well in my yard. I pretty much always have enough to make three or four batches of pesto. And that’s saying a lot, because it takes a hefty amount of basil to make a single batch.

    But that’s okay. Pesto has such an intense, concentrated flavor that very little is needed in any recipe to make a lasting impression.
    ...

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  • Celebrate Pumpkin Seeds!

    Which came first: the pumpkin or the pumpkin seed?

    It’s one of those great mysteries we may never be able to answer. What we do know is that in terms of receiving national honors, National Pumpkin Seed Day (today) precedes National Pumpkin Day, which we’ll celebrate every year on October 26th.

    We also know that pumpkins and their seeds have been around a long time. Native to the Americas, the oldest evidence of pumpkin-related seeds were found in Mexico, and date back to somewhere between 7000 and 5500 BCE.
    Eat Your Pumpkin Seeds!
    In addition, we know that...

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  • Meatless Monday: Preserved Lemon

    One of the delights of attending retreats is the opportunity to taste new, healthy food at every meal. While I love to cook, I also enjoy being surprised. Last summer my favorite new ingredient that appeared in all sorts of main and side dishes was a traditional North African condiment: preserved lemon.

    Preserved lemons are simple to make. The main challenge is to remain patient. Like most pickled condiments, they take a while to mature. You can buy lemons already preserved at Middle Eastern grocery stores or online, but they’re usually not organic. While I was initially anxious to...

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