Vanelja | Finland based Healthy Recipes Cooking Blog
Vanelja offers new inspiration for wholesome food and healthy treats. It's a love letter to the charm of life, natural food and fresh flavors. Recipes focus on pure and natural ingredients, favoring only gluten free, dairy free and refined sugar free dishes.
Well here’s a winter treat worth sharing. This creamy raw cake gets its surprising richness from sweet potato and gentle warmth from gingerbread spices. And lemme tell you that it is one heavenly union.
As you may may have noticed from my previous blog post where I launched my new ebook Dreamy Season – Wholesome food for Holidays & winter, I’m kinda of a Christmas freak. Like I could actually eat Christmas related food the whole winter season and when it comes to Christmas recipes, my imagination seems to be endless.
One of my favorite nice cream recipes I’ve ever created is a gingerbread nice cream that has sweet potato in it. Homehow those two elements make a perfect match and I’ve been wanting to bring them together in some other dish too.
The idea evolved when I got to test the new Electrolux Explore 7 blender. As the first thing I wanted to try with it was a smoothie. I’m kind of a smoothie nerd and my way to test a blender is to see how smooth it actually makes my smoothie. And I have to say I was kind of surpised. Blenders in this price group usually leave smoothies a bit grainy but this baby blended them smooth as velvet. Really nice job.
The second thing I wanted to test was a raw cake. The batter there is thicker than in a smoothie so it gives new challenges to the blender. Again, very nice, very smooth. One great feature in Explore 7 blender is that it’s designed in a way that though it makes mixtures smooth it doesn’t heat up the ingredients so it keeps everything fresh and the nutrients alive n´ kicking. It isn’t a blender for thick nut butters, raw cake crusts etc, but you can definitely make great soups, smoothies, raw cake batters, grind nuts and even make juice (!) with it. Plus it’s pretteehh.
Oh, and back to my sweet potato gingerbread matching mission. So when I challenged the blender with a raw cake I wanted to make something christmassy. Because of my christmas mania condition, you know. Then I remembered the heavinly union of the gingerbread and sweet potato in my nice cream and the idea was born. Also wanted to make a nut-free raw cake for a change, as people ask me about them constantly.
And it came one fine piece of cake, I have to admit.
Try it yourself to get yourself into Christmas mood and let me know how it resonates! And if the Explore 7 blender resonated, tune into my Instagram as I’m giving away one blender on my today’s IG post. See you there!
Hello love! Check this out – One thing I’m really proud of is that I get such an amazing feedback about my recipes from you guys. I also get a lot of wishes on what kind of recipes you want me to create and share. And I always listen to them very carefully, so that I can serve in the best way possible.
Upon your wishes, I have now created a luscious collection of wholesome and delish feel-good Christmas recipes, most of them suitable for the whole winter season, not only for the Holidays.
My brand new ebook is called Dreamy Season and it contains 62 recipes and 141 pages, all made with love by Yours Truly. In this book I have gathered my all-time favourite winter recipes and treats – the ones I love to pamper myself & my family during the Holidays. I have to say that this has been truly a passion project for me, as I’m a crazy Christmas lady who could eat Christmas-spirited food the whole winter.
Dreamy Season ebook serves wholesome & delish recipes for breakfasts, dinners, desserts and drinks, all perfect for the Holiday season – or for those moments when you just feel like enjoying some deliciously comforting winter food magic.
How about for example a bowl of Pink Morning Kiss Porridge or Golden Oatmeal, a piece of Christmas Toffee, selection of plant-based Cheeses and some Christmas Wreath Pizza? Or maybe a slice of Tofu Ham, goodies from the Christmas Platter, a piece of Chai Banana Bread or few mouth-watering Gingerbread Fudge or Snickers Moon Balls with a sip of Cloudy Apple Drink? All plant-based, naturally sweetened and gluten-free, all good for your body as well as to your soul and perfect for those comfy winter moments.
You can read more about the book from here and check out also the Dreamy Season menu. Note that this ebook is in English and it has some of the same recipes that can be found from my Finnish cookbook Joulukirja.
Pay for the ebook safely with PayPal of with your credit card.
Wait for your page to redirect you to a page with a downloadable link.
Download the ebook onto your laptop, iPhone or iPad. (NOTE! the download link will be available to you for 24 hrs and then it will expire.)
Open it with your preferred program such as Preview on Mac, Adobe Reader or iBooks
Go and make your Christmas dreamy!
And for the celebration of the launch I’m giving a big discount for you guys. During this week you will get the Dreamy Season only for €5,90 with the code DREAMY. (Normal price is €9,90.) So if feel good Christmas food resonates, apply the code DREAMY here and get your copy.
I really hope you will enjoy the ebook as much as I enjoyed – LOVED – creating it. And when sharing your creations from the book, remember to tag me @vanelja in so that I can see them.
1 big sweet potato, peeled & steamed (or 1 ½ cup sweet potato puree)
½ cup coconut milk (kept in the fridge)
¼ cup coconut oil, melted (preferably mild taste)
2 ripe bananas, cut to pieces
5-8 tbsp maple syrup or some stevia
1 ½ – 2 tsp gingerbread spice mix (or 1 tsp ceylon cinnamon, ½ tsp ground ginger, ½ tsp ground cardamom)
2 tablespoons almond butter, if you like
Dish size: 15 x 15 cm / 6 inches
Place the oast or nuts into a blender and blend until crust. Pour the crust into a bowl and stir in maple syrup, coconut oil and salt. The mixture should be now easily moldable so that you can create a ball from it. Cover a dish with a parchment paper and press the dough onto the bottom of the dish.
Place the sweet potato cubes, coconut milk (the white thick paste) and coconut oil into the blender and blend until smooth. Add the rest of the ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. Taste and add some of the spices or sweetness, if desired. Pour the mixture into the dish on top of the base crust. Freeze for a few hours until solid. Take pour of the freezer and let thaw for 15 minutes before serving.
Hello, Sunshine! So happy to see you here as I’ve got some real nice goodies waiting for you. Something I’ve created with loads of love and care and something that I hope will bring plenty of good vibes and inspiration to your mornings.
In Bed with Vanelja – Comfy Breakfasts and Dream Food for Eternal Sundays is my brand new ebook I’ve created for all you dear followers of mine. As a thank you for your ongoing support and love. The ebook is now available for you to download – FOR FREE. 15 wholesome, plant-based, gluten free & naturally sweetened healthy breakfast recipes to make your mornings taste and feel oh-so-good.
In this ebook I share some of my all time favorite healthy breakfast recipes, like for example my go-to green juice, comfy granola, brekkie apple pie, Insta-famous blueberry crepes, pumpkin seed bread rolls, dreamy cream cheese, mocha soft serve and my updated weekend pancakes. Sooo many goodies waiting there for you!
I made this ebook as a handcraft by myself as I wanted to learn more about doing layouts an all that jazz. I got so excited about this project that in the end I had to shrink the book as it was about to become enormous. But I took it as a sign that I might be again ready for a new book project. So we’ll see if I’ll end up expanding this ebook to a bigger title or what will happen. The author in me is anyways purring again.
In the ebook I was happy to team up with two beautiful Finnish brands, Kaslink Aito Oat Drink and Balmuir Home Textiles. Both known for their high-quality products. Kaslink’s organic oat drink, or oat milk as I say, is present in many of my recipes as I adore the mildly sweet and subtle taste of it and the fact that the oat in it is organic and locally produced here in Finland. And the luxurious linen beddings and kitchen towels and blankets by Balmuir just take the breakfast in bed experience to another level. People who follow me know that I love to eat (and shoot my food) in bed so pretty and comfy beddings are really a must in Vanelja household. Especially crazy for these sand tones linen duvet covers.
So go collect your copy HERE and let me know how you like the ebook and my healthy plant-based breakfast recipes. If you are listed on my newsletter you can find the ebook on your email you have given while subscribing. Just in case you don’t find it, check out your junk mail, if it has slipped there accidentally.
Well hello, babes! Finally it’s happening, updated Vanelja.com has opened its doors and welcomes you to take a tour. Though it took quite some time to get this open, it has been heart-warming to notice how many of you regularly uses the recipes on my site, as I have got tons of messages from people asking when all the material will be returning. So sorry you’ve had to wait for them, but happy to know you’ve missed my treats!
And now when the new site is open I’m also beyond excited to launch my brand new grocery: Blueberry Dream Cake by Vanelja. It is a treat that I absolutely ah-dore and I’m just so super duper happy to start offering my all time favorite raw cake to people. I get asked almost weekly if I do catering or if I take orders for my dream cakes, and now I can finally say YES!
And this one is truly a raw cake of my dreams. If I should pick only one sweet treat to consume for the rest of my life, it would be my Blueberry Dream Cake, most def, no doubt about it. It has such a mouth-watering taste with the pecan based crust with a hint of cardamom and the rich blueberry filling. The texture is creamy and fluffy yet the cake is very fresh because of the white layer with some hints of lemon in it. I honestly start salivating even now when describing it to you, haha. And what’s lovely about this Blueberry Dream Cake is that there is no coconut flavor that pushes through, which I feel is a problem in many raw cakes.
I’ve made my Blueberry Dream Cake in collab with Green Street, a big-hearted Helsinki-based provider for raw cakes and other healthy food. The cake will be out very soon, at 15th of May to be exact, and you’ll be able to buy it from certain retailers, supermarkets and cafés in Helsinki and Stockholm. Gonna list down all the retailers here on my site soon! And if you want to have a whole cake, preordering is open NOW and the first deliveries start 15th of May. If you have some parties coming up this spring and summer, like graduation parties, family get-togethers, brunches for friends etc. you can preorder the cake HERE. It is a great thing to serve for a big bunch of people as it is vegan, gluten free and naturally sweetened, so it fits to most diets and most occasions. I prefer it as a weekend brekkie, as it is perfect for cozy slow mornings.
The decoration of these photos are not included in the cake, but it has a beautiful pattern on the surface (which you can see here) so it can be served as it is, or you can finish it for example with some blueberries or edible flowers.
At the moment the availability of my Blueberry Dream Cake is limited only to Helsinki, Finland and Stockholm, but hopefully we’ll get the cake to wider reach too. Again, gonna be updating the retailers here on my site. And if you have a café and you’d think my Blueberry Dream Cake could match your selection, throw me a message!
But in the meantime, let me know how you like my cake and my new site! There are still some new features on their way + one surprise gift for you coming before the summer, so stay tuned – especially on Vanelja’s Instagram, as that is the place where I holler most often about my moves.
VANELJA’S ROASTED SWEET POTATO SLICES WITH PINK HUMMUS & AVO
2 sweet potatoes, peeled
Preheat the oven to 200 Celsius / 400 fahrenheit degrees. Slice the sweet potatoes into half inch slices. Spread the slices onto a baking tray covered with baking paper. Pour on some olive oil & sprinkle o salt and black pepper. Bake for 15-20 minutes, until the sweet potatoes feel tender. Take out from the oven. Let cool slightly. Spread on some pink hummus and top with avocado slices and microgreens or herbs + finger salt. Serve & enjoy right away!
1 or a half small beet, peeled & steamed or roasted
2 cups canned chickpeas, drained
(save about ½ cup aquafaba/liquid from the chickpeas)
2 tbsp tahini
juices from half lime
5 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves
pinch of salt
ground black pepper
Blend the beets and chickpeas together in a blender or food processor until slightly combined. Add the rest of the ingredients. Blend. Add some aquafaba so that you get a smooth consistency.
1 ½ frozen banana
½ cup steamed, peeled and frozen zucchini, cut to pieces
½ cup cashew nuts, soaked for 1 hour and rinsed
2 brazil nuts
2 heaping tbsp full fat coconut milk, the white paste
1 tbsp coconut oil
½ tsp vanilla powder
1 tbsp collagen powder (skip, if vegan)
1 tbsp tocotrienols
1 cup unsweetened oat yogurt (or unsweetened coconut yogurt or almond yogurt) +tbsp matcha powder
Combine all ingredients in a blender, except the matcha. Blend on high speed until smooth and creamy. Add some yogurt or plant-based milk if the mixture is too thick. Pour half of the mixture into a bowl. Mix the matcha with the remaining mixture. Fill a serving bowl with the green and white mixture, garnish the smoothie bowl with coconut flakes, edible flowers, apple coins and sesame seeds.
Blend almonds in a blender until fine crust. Add fresh dates, pinch of ceylon cinnamon and nutmeg plus a tiny pinch of celtic sea salt. Blend until mouldable dough. Form tiny balls and roll them in sesame seeds. Keep in the fridge or freezer for a moment to get them nice and cool.
Hello friends! I thought I’d share this oh-so delicious and christmassy Gingerbread Coconut Bundt Cake recipe that got popular on my Instagram also here on my site, so that many of you’d find it.
I created this vegan & gluten-free cake with warm notes of gingerbread and juicy chuncks of dates originally for Risenta and have been preparing it several times already, as it is just sooo good and rich and delish. I try not to think about it too much now so that the cravings won’t hit me again or else I’ll find myself baking it again and eating it tomorrow the whole day…
But you go and make this! And let me know how you liked it!
5 tbsp ground flaxseed
½ cup water
1 ½ cup Risenta almond meal
1 cup Risenta rice flour
⅓ cup coconut sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ceylon cinnamon
2 tsp gingerbread spice mix
½ tsp cardamom
tiny pinch of sea salt
1 can (400 ml) full fat coconut milk
½ cup coconut oil, melted
5 fresh dates, pitted
5 tbsp coconut syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
+ 5 fresh dates, pitted and cut to small pieces
Preheat the oven to 350 Fahrenheit (175 Celsius) degrees. Grease the bundt cake mold with coconut oil. Mix the ground flax and water in a small bowl and leave to thicken. In the meantime prepare the cake dough.
Mix the dry ingredients in a big bowl. Place coconut milk, coconut oil, 5 dates, coconut syrup and vanilla into a blender and blend until smooth. Mix with dry ingredients. Add also the flax mixture you made and mix well. Stir in the date cubes. Pour the dough into the cake mold. Bake for 55-60 minutes. The cake is ready when a toothpick comes out clean. Take out of the oven and let cool for about 10 minutes and remove from the mold. Let the cake cool down totally. Frost and serve! The cake is at its best after one night in the fridge.
Mix the coconut oil, nut butter and vanilla in a small bowl. If the mixture goes too runny, keep it in the fridge for about 15 minutes, mixing it couple of times. Frost the cake and decorate with coconut flakes and nuts.