Food

Time to fulfil your wishes. Your nut-free wishes! Nearly every time I post a new sweet recipe I get messages from my lovely readers with allergies asking if it would be possible for them to prepare the recipe without nuts or almonds. Most of the times I have to disappoint them because nuts and almonds play such a significant role in many raw/health recipes, and the recipe just wouldn’t be the same if you substitute them with something else.

But now, my babies – now I have something magnificent for you! Something that is nut-free, raw, vegan, gluten free, dairy free and naturally sweetened, all at the same time. And delicious too! This one is truly a crowd pleaser.

And it doesn’t lay on coconut! Many times nut-free treats use coconut to get the creamy rich texture, but I know that the taste of the coconut doesn’t please everyone. And I have to admit that I don’t prefer a strong coconut flavor either and nowadays I use coconut in my recipes in veeery subtle ways so that the strong hippie vibe doesn’t push through. (All my love to hippies ♡)

So, therefore I picked a more neutral ingredient here that still gives a nice wholesome consistency. I picked chickpeas – le chick! Those brilliant little creatures that are so versatile, nutrient-rich and lovely. Then I accompanied them with fresh organic dates. Because dates are my no. 1 favorite sweeteners and they also add a nice little bonus to the texture and taste. I really could not survive without fresh dates in my kitchen.

Which brings to mind another quoestion I get asked a lot – Which dates do I use? Well, the ones that you can always find from my kitchen are fresh organic dates by Fontana that are sold in cardboard boxes in fruit ja vegetable section in supermarkets – at least here in Finland. I like the texture, the taste and the fact that they are organic. They are also easy to find because they are available very widely in the supermarkets – at least here in Helsinki. So I was very happy to pair up with Fontana with this post, because I actually use their dates A LOT.

And here’s my hot tip for a natural date sweetener:

Buy a package of fresh dates. Preferably organic. Take about 20 dates, take out the stones and place the dates in a blender. Add about 1 cup water and 1 tsp vanilla extract or ½ tsp vanilla powder, if you like. Blend until creamy and smooth sauce. Add more water, if needed. And if you like your sauce to be extra smooth, remove the date skins under a running water. Then pour the sauce inside a sealable clean jar. Now you have a lovely sweetener that you can use when baking in breakfasts or in any way you want. Store the date paste sealed in a fridge and you can use it easily for 2 weeks.

Now there you have it. Go ahead and make this date caramel paste & my Le Chick! Caramel Bars and serve them for example to your Valentine next week. Moi moi!

V

In collaboration with: Fontana organic dates

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Serves 4

2 cups oat milk

2 cups water

1 1⁄4 cups gluten-free oatmeal

1 ½ tsp gingerbread spice mix

pinch of sea salt

3 fresh dates

1 tbsp walnut oil (or almond butter)

Top with:

apple bites

crushed walnuts or almond flakes

ceylon cinnamon

crushed clove

crushed cardamom

ginger bread pieces

raw organic honey or maple syrup or coconut syrup

oat milk

Pour the oat milk and the water into a pan and bring to a boil. Add oatmeal, salt and spices. Chop the dates into small pieces and put on the pan. Cook in a medium heat for 5-7 minutes until the porridge is cooked. Stir in the walnut oil or almond butter.

Dose the porridge into serving bowls. Top with apple pieces, crushed ginger breads and almond flakes. Sprinkle on the spices and add a drop of honey or syrup. Pour some oat milk on, if you like. Serve and enjoy!

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Life has had quite hectic twists and turns lately. Sometimes I wonder how it is even possible for me as one human being to cope with all these projects I have managed to gather in my life. But in some weird way person kind of multiplies herself, expands time or makes other magic tricks when stuff just needs to be done. And there is no time to sit around when a revolution awaits! A food revolution, you know, in which I try to take part with my work.

A part of my revolution dream has now become reality as my very first cookbook about healthy sweet treats, that came out in Finland some time ago has now been released in the US and it goes by the name It’s a Pleasure. I’m so happy about the outcome – the book looks and feels super pretty and nice and I hope it can help to transform globally the way people feel about sweets with it’s over 80 recipes for cakes, candies, cookies, muffins, ice creams, chocolates and other sweet treats – all without guten, dairy and refined sugar. Because there is just no better way to indulge than to savor with treats that left you feeling light, healthy and satisfied!

Try for example these overwhelming pralines. I have prepared big batches of them lately and people have LOVED them. And no wonder. The best pralines combine many elements: a soft filling, a texture that snaps nicely and something crunchy. Also, a hint of saltiness is a big plus. These chocolates are all of the above and can be created with very simple and wholesome ingredients.

Please, just try them! And if you wish to have a copy of It’s a Pleasure, throw me a message here below before Oct 10th and I’ll pick two winners to whom I’ll post the book next week – in Finnish or in English, you choose!

Until then – Viva la revolucion!

V

NUT CARAMEL CHOCOLATES

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The time has come!! The N’Ice Cream book about healthy vegan ice creams by me and Tuulia has come out today in the US. And I’m over the moon excited! The Finnish version of the book got sold out in a week here in Finland and I hope the international audience will love the English version just as much.

Several people have now said to me that the N’Ice Cream book feels like the ultimate summer saver for them, and that makes me sooo happy. Because that is exactly what this book was designed to be. To enable a feel-good summer with healthy, naturally sweetened and gluten-free vegan ice creams, ice pops, sorbets, soft serves, instant ice creams, ice cream cakes & cookies, waffle cones, sauces, jams and all that jazz. And also our very best tips on how to prepare delicious ice cream easily without an ice cream maker.

You can now buy the book from:

If you like to have more n’ice cream inspiration, come and follow our Instagram: @nicecreambook where we share pics & tips and give shout-outs to peoples beautiful nice cream creations. Be sure to tag your n’ice cream photos #nicecreambook and @nicecreambook so that we can see them!

And now, ladies and gents, I'm happy to introduce these treats I have for you: Lovely lovely Vanilla Chocolate N’ice cream Sandwiches that I made inspired by a couple of recipes from the N’Ice Cream book. They just might be the perfect summer snack. And the perfect way to celebrate the launch of our book. Note that you can always just skip the cookies and make the instant ice cream base and enjoy it with this super quick chocolate sauce, if your ice cream cravings won’t wait!

And then there’s still one more thing: A giveaway! I’m giving away one copy of the N’Ice Cream book. Just write a short hello and why you would like this book to the comments below and you’re in! You’ve got time to participate until midnight Sunday the 22nd of May. And the giveaway is this time open to US, Canada & Finland. Good luck, my friends!

V

VANILLA N'ICE CREAM SANDWICHES

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We made a fun little video with my man about this 3 Ingredient Vegan Apple Pie I had developed and I suddenly thought it might be a good idea to share the whole version of the recipe here too. Although it is insanely simple and you can basically see the whole procedure from the video!

The recipe is from my new and – happy to say – no. 1 best-selling cookbook in Finland Kiitos hyvää Pikaruokaa (meaning healthy fast food) and I personally feel this recipe here is one of the most relaxed ways to make an apple pie I have ever encountered. I’m glad that it popped into my head somewhere from the cosmos one cloudy day when I really needed a quick comfort food.

So check out the video HERE – and see how the magic happens!

I hope you’ll try it and love it as much as my family does!

V

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One of my favorite things in the world is problem solving and finding a solution. Give me an overhand knot and I’ll untangle it. Tell me something is impossible, I’ll find a way. Show me a problem, yo, I'll solve it.

Because in my world, there ain’t no problems, just solutions not yet found.

And that is exactly what a vegan semla (aka shrove bun, a traditional sweet bun filled with whipped cream and almond paste or raspberry jam and consumed for example in Finland, Sweden and in Estonia at Shrove Tuesday / Pancake day.) without gluten, dairy, yeast and refined sugar appeared at first.

Sure, I had made gluten free and yeast free semlas many times before, but they always included eggs. With eggs it is easy. With eggs everything is easy. And then, on the other hand all the vegan semla recipes they include usually white flour and yeast. With white flour and yeast it is easy. Even a baby can do it.

But to make a vegan semla, that has a nice and soft texture, that doesn’t crumble, that has a heavenly taste and none of those belly swelling ingredients – THAT was a tricky equation. That was something I just had to get involved.

So I made my math and baked the first batch. Disaster. The taste was good but the texture was horrible. Let’s modify the recipe and make another batch. Buns come out all flat. Ok, the third version usually always works. Not this time. The taste is great, the texture is better, but buns remain raw on the inside no matter how long I bake them. And finally when they are done, they look horrendous.

At this time a normal person would just say, oh well, let’s just eat pancakes then!
But a maniac like me – is just getting started.
So I roll my sleeves, take a deep breath and go to the mattresses.

I twist the recipe here and there, pour a little bit more of this and less of that. Change the baking temperature and add a new ingredient. In my head the buns should come out brilliant, but you can’t never be certain when it comes to baking. There is always a bit of magic involved, and a lot of chemical reactions happening that are hard to predict. But with high hopes I send my buns to the oven. And with a growing excitement I take them out, split them and fill them. …And with happy tears in my eyes I finally eat them.

I’m in love with these semlas. My family is in love with them too. Please do try them also. With the vanilla flavored coconut whipped cream and super easy homemade almond paste. They just belong together. This equation equals love.

V

Pst, Check out also my other shrove bun inspired recipes:

Creamy Raspberry Cardamom Smoothie & Creamy Raspberry Raw Cake

SEMLAS

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After a long development I can proudly announce that I have captured the essence of a chocolate cake. And here comes the news: A delicious chocolate cake can be done with only just 3 ingredients!

And before you say anything, like "3 ingredient chocolate ain't no news, miss!, let me clarify: this ain’t one of those 3 ingredient cakes, that has been spreading in the internet, which includes store-brought chocolate, which actually contains a big bunch of different ingredients. No, no, no.

This cakes includes solely 3 basic NATURAL ingredients: Organic eggs, dates and raw cacao powder. Yep, that's all you need.

You can of course refine the recipe for example with vanilla powder, cinnamon or a tiny pinch of chili. And top with super easy chocolate mousse, or whipped coconut cream and berries!

The recipe is from my brand new cookbook, and I feel it is a good example of how simple you can make cooking, and still enojy nice flavors and clean ingredients.

And then to the muse of my cake! I have dedicated this cake to my friend’s amazing ethical fashion brand Lovia. Lovia’s clothes and accessories are produced in Helsinki, Finland and they use mainly recycled and organic materials in their clothes and accessories. I recommend to take a look at their beautiful and unique products, photos and films at their site.

Lovia’s pure, wild, clean and dark style made me think of deep chocolate flavors and pure basic ingredients used in a new and innovative way. And the outcome was truly somewhat magical!

As a christmas present Lovia wanted to offer 30 % discount to Vanelja’s followers during this weekend. With the code LoviaVanelja30 you can get the discount when shopping at their online store before the midnight of 13th of December.

So have some chocolate cake folks and make your weekend merry!

V

3 INGREDIENT CHOCOLATE CAKE

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Baby, It is dark, rainy and cold outside but my heart is shining brightly!

The reason for this glow is that my book about healthy fast food can be now finally found in the bookstores in Finland!

And may I just say: Pheeeew.

I’m feeling SO relieved. And happy. But not at all super hyped like I was when my first book was released a year ago. Now the feeling is more trusting, confident, calm and collected. I can be proud about the outcome and I know that this book will be the most used cookbook in our household! My husband, who is quite a lazy cook, has been cooking from the book many times already. So my main mission here is accomplished: Get the guy to cook!

Small step for the humankind, big achievement for my family. Huge.

Hopefully other takeaway lovers and lazy cooks will also find the book inspiring!

The book offers over 80 recipes for healthy, easy and quick vegetarian dishes, all without gluten and refined sugars. Most of the recipes can be done totally vegan. And the best part here is that the dishes can all be done less than in 30 minutes and they come with super simple ingredient lists.

I don't mean to brag but isn't that just great?!

And because many of you have asked me about the English version, I can now say that I’m in the progress of getting the book translated into English, but it will be a project for the next year. Let’s see then in what form it will eventually come out!

But here's as a tasting, some examples from the menu of my book:

For breakfast:

  • 3 x Easy Pancakes
  • 3 x 3 Ingredient Smoothies
  • 3 x Energy Bars
  • Blueberry Ginger Porridge
  • Cinnamon Jar Porridge
  • Chocolate Oat Porridge
  • Coconut Oat Breakfast Rolls
  • Easy Dairy-free Cheeses
  • Fig Pear Crumble

For Lunch & Dinner:

  • Stuffed Sweet Potatoes with Curry Peanut Butter Sauce
  • Asian Green Wraps
  • Nepalese dish with 3 ingredient Naan Bread
  • Quick Curry with Sweet Potato Noodles
  • Sunshine Pasta
  • Avocado Pasta
  • Shiitake Seed Risotto (rice-free)
  • Eggplant Pizzas
  • White Pizza
  • Beetroot Pizza
  • Sweet Potato Pizza
  • Burrito Bowl with Chili Sin Carne
  • 3 x Easy Mayo (egg-free)

For Dessert:

  • 3 Ingredient Chocolate Cake
  • 3 Ingredient Peanut Butter Cake
  • 3 Ingredient Apple Pie
  • Almond Soft Serve
  • 2 Ingredient Cookies
  • Wholesome Banana Muffins
  • 2 Ingredient Apple Donuts
  • Melon Cake for Kids

And lots and lots of more dishes and treats! A small introduction of the book can be found here.

Have a lovely week, Friend!

xxx

V

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One year ago I dreamed about a cookbook that would save our family meals.

My dream book would have recipes that would take less than 30 minutes to make, preferably only 15 minutes, ingredients lists should be nice and short, they would not include gluten, dairy or refined-sugars and most of the recipes should be vegan. The book should offer wholesome recipes for breakfasts, dinners, lunches, snacks and for sweet treats. Kid-friendly recipes would be a big plus and also if the book could also offer better alternatives for pizzas and burgers, my man’s favorite meals. All in all, the recipes in the book should be healthy, super easy and super delicious.

Too sad there wasn’t any book like that on the market. I went through a big bunch of cookbooks and waited for a hero that would fly into my arms and save those moments where the stomach is empty and the mind goes blank at the same time. There were nice recipes here and there but a book that would fulfil ALL my needs just didn’t seem to exist.

So, I had to make it myself. And I did.

Two weeks from here my next cookbook about healthy fast food is going to be released in Finland. The Finnish name is Kiitos hyvää Pikaruokaa, and I’m proud to say that the book offers EXACTLY everything I just described above!

I am so thrilled and I can’t wait to get it in my hands – For one since I actually cook the recipes from the book everyday, and I can’t remember all my recipes in detail, and I don’t wanna go on searching for them from my computer all the time, so I really need to get the book in my kitchen and in my hands – ASAP!

Gonna let you know more about the book later, but I’m sure you guys are going to appreciate it as well. Who would not love healthy and tasty fast food!

But now, to today’s meal! This vegan meatballs and pasta recipe is not actually from my upcoming cookbook, because I created it after the book had already gone to print, but it makes an excellent and simple everyday meal also. I’m just loving this easy pasta made from sweet potato and the rich taste and great texture of these vegetarian meatballs! If you ask me it's quite an excellent mimic of the Italian classic meal, with a healthy and fun twist.

V

VEGAN MEATBALLS AND SWEET POTATO PASTA

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Hello darlings, it’s been a while! Actually over a month since my last post. …Oops. I could say that I have been working like crazy and have been doing this and that and the third, which would be very much true, but as my mother always says: only a lazy person counts her work. So let’s trust her and forget explanations and concentrate on the present, and on the most essential – the goodies I brought you!

I have been doing some collaboration with Oatlet Store, which is a brilliant webshop that deals oat-based products. And as a big fan of all oat related I have been super excited to test their gluten-free oat products from Provena and to design new recipes with them.

One of my absolutely favorite thing that came out of my laboratory is this pre-christmas sweet potato oat porridge. It is just insanely tasty, comforting and rich! And it includes my favorite ingredients at the moment: Sweet potato, cinnamon, cardamom, pecan nuts and – jumbo-sized oat flakes. Oh-my-god – TOTALLY different thing than those small oat flakes, that taste like a cardboard, especially after you’ve tasted jumbo ones. So delicious, and you get beautifully textured hearty porridge out of them.

I’m planning to make this sweet potato oat porridge my family’s official christmas porridge that will be consumed every morning until christmas. Well, at least on the weekends. And maybe only in December. I would rather like this to give nice taste memories to my kid than to cause any food traumas. It is too good to be overdosed. …Although I have a tiny hunch I’m gonna do it personally anyways.

But hey, with this pre-christmas porrdige I have also a pre-christmas gift for you: With the code VANELJA you get -20 % discount when shopping in Oatlet Store and the discount is available for two weeks from now. Oatlet Store ships throughout the EU. And if you want a tip, I can recommend at least, surprise surprise, these Provena Gluten Free Jumbo Oats and also Provena Gluten Free Whole Grain Oat Flour for baking.

Have a lovely November, stay warm and eat a lot of porridge!

V

SWEET POTATO OAT PORRIDGE

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It was exactly one year ago when I opened the doors of Vanelja and introduced it to the world for the first time. And in my very first blog post I then wrote:

“Nothing in Vanelja is permanent, no goals has been set. That makes it possible to grow to whatever direction life takes it to. It is exciting to see what kind of flowers will Vanelja bloom in when the fertilizers are freedom, passion and pleasure!”

And wow, what beautiful blossoms have I been able to witness during this first year! I have been just amazed by all the opportunities, connections and people life has sent through my blog.

During this year I have made great new friends from different parts of the world, I have also made 3 cook books (insane, I know! do not try at home), been featured in international media, websites and blogs, been picked by Instagram to their suggested users list, been nominated in the Saveur Food blog Award and actually winning the award in the Best-designed blog category. And then there are also some huge huge things I can’t yet talk about that have started to seed during this year.

So may I just say: Phew. And thank You. Thank you life, thank you dear You, thank you universe. I promise to continue following my dreams. And as Elsie De Wolfe said:

“I am going to make everything around me beautiful – that will be my life.”

And I’m also going to make lots of these delicious banoffee-muffins, which you should try also. They too taste like a dream.

V

BANOFFEE MUFFINS

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Hello lover, I just dropped by to tell you that in case you were wondering what to make for lunch this week or prepare quickly in the evening, here is the recipe you have been looking for! It is especially designed for these late summer days when the sun is still nicely warming our noses but you can already feel that the chill of fall is on it’s way.

The recipe is super simple, it’s quick to prepare, takes less than 15 minutes and the ingredient list is nicely minimalistic. So it has exactly those features that an excellent everyday food should always have. And it of course tastes heavenly.

It is a spinach soup with a twist. The soup is made of ripe, juicy pears and fresh spinach leaves accompanied with coconut milk and a nice bunch of fresh herbs, coriander and parsley.

I’m loving how it is creamy and smooth, fresh and earthy, all at the same time. I couldn’t wish for better elements from my power soup.

I hope you’ll find it is a perfect match for your late August days too!

V

PEAR SPINACH SOUP

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Did I hear someone wondering why it is so quiet in Vanelja and why the lady of the house has not been posting ANYTHING for over five weeks (which equals an eternity in the world of internet)?

Well, let me explain. It is because of the incredible tradition we have here in Finland called a summer holiday month. Yes, a holiday MONTH. In my country people just totally stop working for about 4 – 6 weeks in the summer time. No joke. They travel to their summer cottages, soak their feet in some of our thousands of lakes or in the Baltic sea, wander in forests picking berries, laying around in their hammocks and watching the clouds go by. And if you are an employee you get actually paid for doing all that. Plus your employer gives you also a big monetary reward when you return to work, as a thank you for coming back. I’m still not pulling you. Welcome to Finland.

Although, as I’m nowadays an entrepreneur and outside of that financial support system when being on a vacation, but still, what can you do, I’m a true Finn, I need my holiday month. Also I’m a true believer of freedom which means that you do what ever your heart desires and sometimes it might just be something else than blogging. Like swimming in the sea and picking cloudberries.

But now I have returned from my big Finnish summer adventure and trying to re-teach myself on how to use the internet. I’m starting gently and for the time being my bed is my home office and my pajamas are my uniform. That is why it also felt natural to share you guys a breakfast recipe, because my week has mainly felt like an eternal morning, or a Sunday.

This dairy free peach coconut yogurt and cinnamon granola enjoyed with peanut butter is just a perfect thing for hazy lazy times like this.

And the super soft bed linen you see in the pictures, that are decorating my headquarters, those I got from ever so lovely Evencki. I think it wash actually the linen that made me think of peaches in the first place. The color and the tender softness. Both perfect for a week of Sundays.

V

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Galette. The word which commonly refers mainly to certain pies is associated in my mind with a crazy person. As “galen” means “crazy” in Swedish and “galette” could then easily be a crazy person in Italian, or something.

In my head I see a passionate woman with a messy hair and flour dust all over her face who is so crazy about pies that she doesn’t have time to polish it and fiddle with it, so she just mixes whatever fruit or berries she can find, throws the fillings in the center of the dough and sort of slaps the sides in the middle so that the pie barely keeps it’s form and then swooshes it into the oven! And when the pie is done, she eats it while still standing in front of the kitchen counter with her apron on. Sucking her fingers in between devouring because the pie is still way too hot, but at the same time way too tempting and delicious for her to keep her fingers away from it.

Well, the reality is much more boring, and galette means just a flat cake, usually a rustic berry or fruit filled pie. Or quite surprisingly, a thin man. But not a crazy baker. Only in my head. And possibly in yours too now.

So with that image in your mind I suggest you to try this luscious gluten-free berry galette that is super simple to make. And even though nothing usually beats freshly baked pies this pie is actually maybe even more delicious if you happen to have the willpower to save it for the next day.

When I did the first batch I savored it immediately.

Yes, with my apron on, in front of the oven. Yes, I am the messy crazy baker lady described. Yes, you already knew it, I know.

But, with the second batch I managed to save a few pieces until the next day. And boy was it moist and tasty then!

Next I’m going to make one pie to be eaten right away and one to be saved until the day after. I’m also planning to try this base with peaches and raspberries and with apples and cinnamon. Strawberries & rhubarb I already tried, and It was heaven! Pears and figs would work with this one too
And why not also savory fillings! Like mushrooms and onions, or roasted vegetables and herbs. Or squash and ricotta!

Ok, apparently my summer is going to be just totally “galette”. Hopefully yours too!

V

Try this galette for example with vegan vanilla ice cream, they are match made in heaven! Healthy ice cream recipes can be found in our Kind Ice Cream for You eBook.

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I have to say my life is super full at the moment. Actually even a little bit too packed for my taste. My calendar is full with work, meetings and photoshoots, my hands are full with things to do both in home and also in work field, and my head is crowded with stuff I need to remember and take care of. Surprisingly, even though it usually never goes together with a hectic life, my heart is full also – and it is just bursting with gratitude!

One reason for that is this unforgettable incident I had last week in New York at the Saveur Food Blog Awards where Vanelja was nominated as one of the finalist. And you can’t believe this – the craziest thing happened: Editor’s Choice for Best-designed Blog! As in Vanelja was picked to be the winner by the editors from the almighty Saveur magazine!

high-fives with my graphic designer friends Leena Oravainio & Lotta Niemien who helped to build this site and with all you followers, readers and lovely friends and supporters! You guys made this happen!

It is such a huge honor and such a recognized award that I am still totally overwhelmed and it is still hard for me to understand that it actually happened. The whole event, the award, all the amazing people and fellow bloggers I met. The whole experience was like from a dream. Especially when I was totally jet-lagged and was feeling quite surreal even in the first place.

So now, we need to party. Because that's what we people do when something big comes our way – we celebrate and throw a party to mark these big happenings and changes in our lives to somehow make them feel more real, right? First we ask someone to pinch ourselves and then we party.

And because it is summer and I’m just all about ice creams at the moment, as our e-book about healthy dairy-free & refined-sugar-free ice creams, Kind Ice Cream for You just got launched last week, I decided that we celebrate with ice cream. Yay!

This one is an adaptation of one “Instant Chocolate Ice Cream” recipe from our book which can be enjoyed as a soft serve or as a more solid ice cream. I chose to flavor it with a little bit of rum and raisins just to make it more festive. And because rum & raisin is my all time favorite ice cream flavor. And well, because alcohol just gives a nice boost to certain occasions. Though here the rum is first brought to a boil so there’s no change/risk of getting tipsy. …Although, you just might do it anyways because of the intoxicating raw chocolate and the super rich flavor!

So enjoy, live life to it’s fullest and celebrate all the big and small treasures life throws to you. For example now with these luxurious party ice cream balls flying your way!

V

Remember to follow me on Instagram and tag your ice cream photos with #kindicecreamforyou or #kindicecream!

RUM & RAISIN CHOCOLATE ICE CREAM

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It has arrived! Our e-book about healthy ice creams is finally out! And I must say that I am deeply and utterly in LOVE with it. Hands down, it must be the loveliest cook book I have ever encountered. And that is my totally objective opinion. If me and my partner-in-crime Tuulia Talvio would have not made it I would still love it to pieces! Hahaa!

But the most amazing thing for me here is how this book took even myself by surprise. Because when we started making it this winter I would have never guessed that it would become so big, beautiful and comprehensive as it is.

First we planned to make just a nice small e-book about healthy, dairy-free, refined-sugar-free and gluten-free ice creams with few nice recipes with few nice pictures. But the project kept on growing and growing until one day we realised that we have a real book in our hands, well, on our computer screens – with 130 pages and over 60 recipes, great pictures – and last but not least, a beeeautiful layout, thanks to my dear friend, a super talented graphic designer Leena Oravainio.

So here I am now, super proud, deeply happy and a little bit teary over our kind and beautiful new-born book, Kind Ice Cream for You. And I really want you to meet her, so go ahead and
read more about it in the book’s official website: www.kindicecream.com.

You can buy the book through my SHOP or through www.kindicecream.com or by going straigh HERE. All the roads lead to the same destination. NOTE: E-BOOK IS TEMPORARILY OUT OF STOCK

So be free to share, download and spread the love! We have really poured our love and passion in this one, so we are very grateful for all the help you can give in spreading our kind ice cream message! #kindicecreamforyou #kindicecream

Take care, be Kind and have a lovely ice-cream-filled June, my friend!

V

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Hi Honeys! I have been in silence here for quite some time, mainly because I have been soaking my feet in the golden sands and foaming waters of Venice Beach, LA and also enjoying the blooming spring of New York and tried to keep myself as far from computer as possible. With a quite great success, as you may have noticed.

The other thing that is keeping me busy elsewhere is my book project, well, actually TWO book projects that I´m currently working on. (Gonna hype more about them later! But may I just say that there will be coming up some insanely delicious stuff made with a big and shining heart!) And because there is only one me and only certain amount of hours in the day and a soul that seeks also for relaxed family time so that easily equals some tranquility in this channel.

But, now I got you something special to make up my absence: A luxurious and truly amazing chocolate cake in a jar recipe that I designed a while ago to one Finnish web site but hadn´t posted it here yet. This layered sweetie has it all – the creaminess, some crunchiness, the rich cake layer and above all delicious taste and wholesome ingredients!

And it is actually very simple to assemble even though the instructions may seem quite complicated by a first glance. You just layer some clean chocolate cake crumble, raw chocolate sauce, banana, nuts and coconut whipped cream in a jar and then spoon the magic in your mouth! simple and sensational.

Please let me know the level of your love when you decide to try it! At least my heart expanded to the maximum already with the first bite.

V

CHOCOLATE LUXURY CAKE IN A JAR

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I have a huge spring time crush happening here. The target of my affection is oh-so creamy and dreamy home-made pistachio milk. What a charmer. The color of this heavenly nectar is so beautiful that I could just sit and watch it´s tones through my drinking glass forever. …If I would not be so eager to gulp it down in a heartbeat.

Pistachio milk is perfect for example in making raw cakes and ice creams and it´s a loveliest base for smoothies too! In today´s smoothie recipe I connected pistachio milk with figs. And boy did it turn out delicious!

I warmly recommend you try it out on some lovely spring day. And also a bunch of other delicious and fresh smoothie recipes from my free e-book, Creamy Smoothie Guide!

And hey, while you´re here could I ask you to take a minute (or more like 30 seconds) and vote for VANELJA in Saveur Food Blog Awards in the best-designed blog category, as my blog is one of the finalists. Your vote would mean a world to me! As this whole being-in-the-finals already did. You need to registrate first but it only takes a second and you won´t get any junk mail.

So Click & Vote for VANELJA and pure pleasures! Thank you darling, I send you loads of love in return!

V

PISTACHIO FIG SMOOTHIE

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“She´s a smooth operator, smooooth operator…”

I am so happy to announce that I have created something really cool for you guys. I have been a real “smooth operator” and collected my all time favorite smoothie recipes and best smoothie tips inside of virtual covers of an e-book. The Creamy Smoothie Guide includes 34 pages packed with delicious recipes, mouth-watering photos and hot tips + a formula for a perfect green smoothie. This e-book is a gift from VANELJA to you! You can now download it from HERE.

At the same time you´ll be able to subscribe to VANELJA mailing list which means that you´ll be privileged to get more pure pleasures, recipes, news and quality content, such as this smoothie guide, to your email about once in a month. No non-sense spamming, I promise. Just diamonds.

So go ahead and download your Creamy Smoothie Guide and make your blender buzz! I hope the guide can channel even a drop of that inspiration and energy to you that these liquid lovers give to me! Feel free to share love and tell about VANELJA and The Creamy Smoothie Guide to your friends in your channels:

Facebook

Instagram

Pinterest

Twitter

TWEETABLE: A LOVER OF SMOOTHIE? GET THIS FREE CREAMY SMOOTHIE GUIDE WITH 34 PAGES FULL OF MOUTH-WATERING RECIPES, PICS & TIPS!

Thank you!

V

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I have always found it very interesting to observe how different people react on new things, when they hear great news, new opportunities arises or something good happens. Some go openly bonkers screaming and jumping from happiness, some start panicing and turn the good thing into something scary and intimidating and some swallow their joy and let just a slight smile escape through their lips even though they are dancing and moshing inside.

And then there are people like me who´s natural reaction for something good is to bake a cake. (After the going-publicly-bonkers-phase.) For me a cake represents a deep and intense joy and something ultimately festive. The whole procedure including designing, cooking, eating, food styling and photographing a cake is something that my soul finds very relaxing, joyous and gratifying. For me creating a cake is art on it´s best.

This weekend I have been celebrating with this phenomenal Stracciatella Chocolate Cake that was my reaction to one magnificent news I received on friday. It is born from pure happiness and bliss. When I served the cake people were just chewing it in total silence for a while, then they took a deep sigh and bursted into a praise. Like music to my ears.

I´m not going to tell just yet what was the thing that inspired me to make this super tasty and creamy and luscious piece of work, that I will announce tomorrow on my social media channels (Instagram & Facebook). Now I just wanted to share my happiness in the form of this cake and wish it can pass on some of my great mood and love to all of you!

V

STRACCIATELLA CHOCOLATE CAKE

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Who ordered a super tasty grain-free and yeast-free pizza? Hold your tablecloths! Here comes your waitress with so jaunty dance moves that even the pale white pizza on my tray almost blushes.

But what can you do when you have created something so tasty and phenomenal – A delicious white pizza that is build on a gluten-free, yeast-free and vegan pizza crust and which is one amazing combination of a crispy pizza and and a rich savory pie – with a hint of flaky mouthfeel to it. It is simply a hit!

I first planned to post it on friday, which is a classcial pizza day, but then thought, screw that, I´m probably going to make it on every evening this week so I must give others the opportunity to do that also. And preparing this “pizza pie” takes less than 20 minutes so you could actually make it even on your lunch break.

And wait, before you run to buy the pizza ingredients I want to highlight also these two gluten-free Vanelja Pizzas, that you could also find interesting:

Butternut Squash and Sage Pizza

Cauliflower Pizza

Try these out and find your favorite!

V

WHITE PIZZA

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These last days I have been so grateful for all the feedback and daily messages that I am receiving from the people who have bought my KIITOS HYVÄÄ -cook book (in Finnish) and who have cooked something that has blown their mind away and taken them to healthy treats heaven. That is absolutely the best thing for me as a cook book author. To success to inspire and give new ideas for clean eating. And to read, hear and see the reaction of the people when they notice how good, let´s say for example a raw blueberry cheese cake or raspberry candy sticks can taste or how delicious a Cherry Garcia ice cream made mainly from hemp seeds, raw chocolate and honey can be!

After my book was published in December it has been the best selling cook book (for 3 months already!) for example in this Finnish online book store. And that is beyond amazing! It says clearly that people are tired of that shabby, shitty and bloated feeling they get from the traditional pastries, and that they want to feel good not only when they are dropping that piece of cake into their mouths but also afterwards. And no-one wants to give up their pleasures and sweet treats! And actually no-one has to, you just have to pick better ingredients and maybe learn few new tricks.

At the moment I´m looking for a publisher in the US and in Europe so that I could get the book in other languages also, for aaaall you people with sweet n clean cravings out there! Many of you have been asking for an English version, and I also heard a funny rumor that such would be published any day soon. But as far as I know it is not happening just yet, although I took it as a sign, so maybe in the near future it will be not just a rumor but also reality. Fingers crossed!

In the meantime I will share one of the most loved recipes from the book – Sea Salt Toffee Candies aka Nut Butter Toffee! We also made a video of them sponsored by the great nu3.fi. CHECK IT OUT!

And because all the feedback that I have received from these I really have to give a word of caution: These golden cuties seem to be truly addictive stuff. They are super easy to make and they taste delicious. Before you notice you´ll be making another batch. And another, and another.
Regardless, please do try!

V

SEA SALT TOFFEE CANDIES

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Everything easygoing feels now very tempting. Or maybe those kind of things always attract me like a light bulb attracts the fly. Light-hearted, bright and laid-back essence just feels the right way to be. Ask for example from golden retrievers, daisies or from these carefree little blondies!

So the recipe of the day is called Flourless blondies, Flourless Chickpea Blondies, to be exact.

Once again, a surprise ingredient! Peas. But you´d never guess by the delicious taste what they are actually made of. And that is because they get their genius side kick from banana, almond butter, honey and vanilla extract and maybe, if you will, from a pinch of cinnamon too. So good, I promise!

And I love the way how they are super easy to make, just blend all ingredients in a blender, pour into a pan and bake. Ta-daa! And the whole procedure takes less that 30 minutes from the moment you start having cravings until the moment you pop them out from the oven. My kind of darlings!

And speaking of darlings, I would love you to be one too and vote my blog at Saveur magazine´s annual food blog awards, in case you like my recipes, photos and videos or find this page inspiring! Nominations close on March 13 so you´ll have two more days to vote. Getting nominated would mean a lot to my work.

Thank you and have a lovely and light-hearted rest of the week!

V

FLOURLESS CHICKPEA BLONDIES

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