Daily Archives: 30 July 2012

National Parks Week

Lake District / Cumbria - Wast Water

Ok, so our weather may be atrocious and some of our preferences and politics questionable, but I am fiercely proud of Britain.

Where else can you experience such varied and beautiful topography in such a small space; see such stunning architecture; experience genuine history and enjoy so much culture?

National Parks are amongst our genuine treasures, and places of which we can be justifiably proud. They are areas of protected countryside that everyone can visit, and where people live, work and shape the landscape.

The UK’s 15 National Parks are part of a global family of over 113,000 protected areas, covering 149 million square kilometres or 6% of the Earth’s surface.

There are 10 National Parks in England, 3 in Wales and 2 in Scotland:

■ England – Dartmoor, Exmoor, Lake District, New Forest, Northumberland, North York Moors, Peak District, the Yorkshire Dales, the South Downs and the Broads which has equivalent status to a National Park.

■ Wales – Brecon Beacons, Pembrokeshire Coast and Snowdonia

■ Scotland – Cairngorms and Loch Lomond and the Trossachs.

Each park is so distinctly different and spectacular in its own way, it would be very difficult to choose a favourite (although I do delight in the towering crags of the Lakes and the delicacy of the wild flowers on the Pembrokeshire coast.)

This year’s National Parks Week is a celebration of our beautiful winning landscapes that have inspired mountaineers, sailors, cyclists, runners and Olympic athletes to aim higher and train harder.

Sebastian Coe, now Lord Coe and the man in charge of our 2012 Olympic Games, was brought up in Sheffield and used to train in the Peak District National Park before going on to win Olympic gold medals in Moscow (1980) and Los Angeles (1984) and many other medals in a glittering athletic career.

The hope is that a visit to a National Park will inspire everyone to get fit and active too!
There are activities and events for all ages and abilities in all areas of Britain. See http://www.nationalparks.gov.uk/visiting/events.htm for more details.



Fat Rascals recipeAnd after all that exertion, you’ll need
some sustenance. Try these Fat Rascals,
which originate from one of the
National Parks; the North
Yorkshire Moors.

Recipe taken from Around Britain Dairy Cookbook.


P.S. The main image is Wast Water, Lake District.

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Fat Rascals

Fat Rascals recipeThere is lots of history behind these biscuits, and they may originally have been cooked on open turf or peat fires on Whitby Moor. 

Preparation time – 10 minutes
Cooking time – 18 minutes
Calories per biscuit – 200 Kcal
Fat per biscuit – 9g of which saturated – 5.8g
Makes – 10
Suitable for vegetarians

Plain flour 250g (9oz)
Salt pinch
Butter 110g (4oz)
Currants 50g (2oz)
Light muscovado sugar 2 tbsp
Milk 3–4 tbsp
Caster sugar for sprinkling

1 Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas 6. Butter a baking sheet.

2 Sift the flour into a bowl and add the salt. Rub in the butter, then stir in the currants and sugar. Add the milk and bind to form a dough. Knead the dough lightly on a floured surface and then roll it out to about 1cm (1⁄2in) thick.

3 Use a 5cm (2in) cutter to cut out rounds and place them on the baking sheet. Re-roll and cut trimmings as necessary. Sprinkle caster sugar over the tops. Cook in the centre of the oven for 15–18 minutes. These will keep in an airtight container for up to three days.

Recipe taken from Around Britain Dairy Cookbook.

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