Cross country skiing in Herts and Lentil & Paprika Soup

Second hand cross country skis were ordered for Christmas and I really thought that the chances to use them here in the lovely hills of Herts  would  just remain one of my many fantasies…I had such a vision for it.  Saturday night however there was hope – just before midnight we had enough snow for a little teaser in the back garden, leaving the front door on skis might have just become a reality after all.

I closed my eyes like a kid on Christmas Eve and woke up the next day jumping into 2 layers of running leggings, had a quick breakfast and off we went:

Breaking through the snow was more challenging that we initially thought and it took us a whole 2 hours to complete a 6 km circuit…going uphill pretty much all the way. We have walked and run the hills  of Youngsbury Park on so many occasions but doing it on skis was just a special moment.

 

 

 

 

To keep you warm and healthy in this cold weather I am sharing with you my Lentils and Paprika recipe:

 

  • 1 onion
  • celery branch
  • 4 carrots
  • 250gr green lentils
  • 1 tsp of tumeric
  • 1tsp smoked paprika
  • juice of one lime
  • coriander

Slightly fry the onion and celery in a tbsp of olive oil, season well with salt pepper and the spices, add the carrots and lentils (rinsed first).  Time to add the stock of your choice, I used chicken stock , bring the pan to the boil.  Once boiled removed the first spoonfuls of froth and reduce the heat.  Cook until the lentils are tender and blend.  I like to add fresh coriander and lime juice to give a fresh twist to the soup.

 

 

P.S: I could not resist a photo of the splendid Spanish Onion, I did not grow the beast but bought it from my local farm shop Pearce’s Farm Shop.

Stay warm x

 

 

 

Fuzzy morning in Herts

Every day starts with a country walk, a way to get some air and admire the surroundings, forever changing forever beautiful.

I love this view – the contrast of the fields with the sky.  Today the fog unwrapped texture – I feel inspired to explore it further with my brushes and paint…I can see the sketching taking shape in my head.  Closing my eyes I am running towards my treasure chest, picking my canvas, laying out the colours I will be using…opening my eyes I am thinking: bring on Sunday.

Hot week-end in October!

Last week-end was just so unexpected with temperatures soaring up to 29 degrees…a bike ride through the lovely country side of Herts from Cold Christmas to Much Hadham literally took my breath away.

 

The garden still blooming with vibrant colours …every living creatures out too aware that winter is just round the corner…

 

Sunday was the best – spent in Brightlingsea a lovely unspoilt part of Essex.