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