A delicous thick and warming winter soup


250 grams lentils (split)
1 leek (sliced)
1 sweet potato
2 large carrots
1 stick celery
1 glove garlic (finely chopped)
1 bay leaf
1.2 litres water
1 vegetable stock cube
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or chilli powder)
3 teaspoons bouillon powder, low salt.


Place all ingredients into a large saucepan and bring to the boil. Skim the top if necessary.   Cover and simmer for 20 – 25 mins,  or until vegetables are tender.

Allow soup to cool slightly,  remove the bay leaf. and puree the soup. Reheat ,  and season with black pepper.

Serve with fresh French baguette ,   optional grill some bacon, and add pieces to soup.


There are many Christmas markets in and around northern France,  which are well worth a visit, below are to name but a few.

Calais market, held in the 2nd week December, usually around the 12th December 2014.

Boulogne market 15th December 2014

Cite of Europe, is just a few miles from Calais, a Christmas extravaganza , everything under one roof.

Address Christmas market, usually held on a Sunday around the 14th December 2014, where you can enjoy a mulled wine and hot donuts.

Lille Christmas market, is held from the end of November until the end of December in the Place Rihour, over 65  christmas stalls, exhibitions, and theatrical performances.