Marmaladey Sausage Rolls

Marmaladey Sausage Rolls

When I was given a jar of Mackays Orange, Lemon and Ginger marmalade and a blank slate to cook whatever I liked with it for #mackaysmarmalademarch my mind went as blank as the aforementioned slate!  Being a devoted fan of the orange stuff, I’d already blogged all of my favourite things to do with it so coming up with something new was seriously challenging.  Looking back through my old recipes for inspiration I found one involving marmalade that was a particular favourite – sticky marmaladey cocktail sausages – and wondered how I could improve upon those little beauties…

The thing is, sweet marmalade and savoury sausage is a properly delicious combination, the more so when the marmalade has reduced while cooking into a lovely sticky glaze that you can lick off your fingers.  So I knew I wanted to stay with some finger-foodie, which led me eventually to these.

Sausage rolls are so easy to make that it really is a sin not to.  The secret is good quality sausages and ready rolled puff pastry.  Beyond that, anything goes, and half the fun is experimenting with different flavour combinations, like Thai red curry paste, or marmalade!  What I love is that the marmalade adds a lovely but subtle sweet note without overwhelming the sausage roll (another reason to get good quality sausages).  The black onion seeds add another savoury note as well a bit of texture, but you could use poppy seeds or sesame seeds if you have some of those handy.

The first batch of these taught me 1) not to get carried away with the amount of marmalade you use because it will get too watery and you’ll end up with the dread soggy bottoms, 2) not to glaze until you’re into the last 10 minutes of cooking time because a marmalade caramelises really really quickly, and 3) the combination worked just as well as I hoped it would.    

Marmaladey Sausage Rolls
Yields 10
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
35 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
35 min
Stuff you'll need...
  1. 250g pork sausages or sausage meat
  2. 375g ready-rolled puff pastry
  3. 2 tablespoons marmalade (I used Mackays Orange, Lemon and Ginger)
  4. 1 egg yolk
  5. 1 tbsp milk
  6. Butter or oil for greasing, or waxy baking parchment paper
  7. Black onion seeds (also called Nigella seeds)
Bake!
  1. Start by preheating the oven to 200C. While it’s heating up, prepare the baking sheet by greasing it or lining it with parchment paper.
  2. Lay the pastry out flat on a lightly floured surface, or more waxy baking parchment, and cut horizontally right down the middle so that you have two long strips. Mix together the egg yolk and milk to make an egg wash, then brush the far border of each strip of pastry with a little of the egg wash.
  3. If using sausages, cut a slit up the length of the sausage skin with scissors or a sharp knife and poke all the sausagemeat out into a mixing bowl. Add one tablespoon of marmalade and then snap on a pair of CSI vinyl gloves and get your hands stuck in, mixing it all up until the marmalade is combined well with the sausagemeat.
  4. Divide the sausage meat mixture in half and shape each piece into a long, thin sausage, along the length of the pastry towards the edge nearest you. Then roll the pastry away from you and up and over to seal in the sausage meat. Roll the whole thing over so the sealed edge is underneath.
  5. (If you’re making these ahead of time they can now be kept in the fridge for 24 hours, lightly covered with cling film, or they can even be frozen for up to 3 months - if cooking from frozen just add another 10 minutes to the cooking time).
  6. Use a sharp knife to cut into thumb-length sausage rolls, discarding the pastry ends. Score a couple of slits in the top of each one before lifting them carefully onto the greased/lined baking sheet. Pop in the oven, middle shelf, and bake for 25 minutes.
  7. Warm up the other tablespoon of marmalade in a small saucepan until it gets a little runny. After the sausage rolls have been in the oven for 25 minutes, remove from the oven and brush them with the runny marmalade before sprinkling all over with black onion seeds. Pop back into the oven for 5-10 minutes, until they are cooked through and golden.
Notes
  1. Freeze the sausage rolls individually on the pastry parchment, once they're frozen you can then pop them into a bag and they won't stick together!
fifigoesnom http://www.fifigoesnom.com/
Haggis, Neeps & Wee Tattie Scone Canapes with Red Onion Marmalade

Haggis, Neeps & Wee Tattie Scone Canapes with Red Onion Marmalade

Things to look forward to in January – Awards season, restaurant offers, Chinese New Year (this year), 6 Nations (but not this year) and Burns Night! Not that I need The Bard’s permission, but tucking into a plate of haggis in honour of his birthday on the 25th is as good an excuse as any 🙂  I usually run in the opposite direction of anything involving offal, but haggis is the one shining exception. It is a wonderfully savoury eat, all spicy and peppery, and with that fantastic texture that manages to be crumbly without being dry. Can you tell I’m a fan…?

Of course, it has to be Macsween’s. I have the most wonderful butcher at the end of my street that does their own haggis, but I just can’t quite bring myself to be unfaithful to Macsween. So when I was challenged by @Eat_Scottish to get #InspiredbyBurns and put a new spin on the immortal trinity of haggis, neeps and tatties I was beyond delighted to find a Macsween’s haggis in the box of goodies they sent to inspire me!

But what to do with it??  Hubby and I spent a night brainstorming ‘things to do with haggis’ and came up with this! Or a variation of, elements of which didn’t survive the testing weekend (thank goodness for a testing weekend!)

I love haggis as a main course, either in a traditional style or as a part of something else like balmoral chicken, but I adore it as a starter with something sweet and sticky. Stac Polly on Dublin Street is to blame for that, their haggis parcels in filo pastry with a plum sauce is the stuff of legend. And The Magnum’s haggis spring rolls with Thai sweet chili sauce inspired me to try making them myself. So I knew I wanted to try my hand at a starter or something finger foody.

I have to say, the blini-esque tiny tattie scones were an inspired idea, and credit has to go to Hubby for coming up with (and cooking!) that. We actually made a giant tattie scone first time round and then took a cookie cutter to it, but the edges weren’t as clean or, most importantly, as crispy as when you cut first and then cook. It’s a wee bit more fiddly but well worth it. Alternatively, buy ready-made tattie scones and cookie cutter out what you need before warming them up.

We cheated a wee bit with the neeps by adding a few carrots for colour, but it contrasted nicely with the tattie scones and tasted good to boot.

The red onion marmalade you can make beforehand as it keeps for about 2 weeks covered properly in the fridge (or buy a jar of ready-made, there are some good ones out there) Our original idea was to actually top the haggis with it but it ended up hiding too much of the good stuff so we shifted it down a layer, but made sure to still show it off.

I’m afraid, though, that we didn’t keep a track of actual measurements so please excuse my somewhat vague recipe below. The only consolation I can offer is that whatever is leftover is scoffable in any combination of whatever is left – Hubby and I were merrily left downing tattie scones and red onion marmalade, hardship!

Which just leaves me to say…
“Fair fa’ your honest, sonsie face,
Great chieftain o’ the pudding-race!”

Stuff you’ll need:
Haggis (Macsween’s microwaveable haggis provides a good amount for making lots of these)
Cold mashed potatoes
Flour
Mashed neeps and carrots
Red onion marmalade (recipe here)
Chives, snipped for decoration
Butter
Milk
Salt and pepper for seasoning

To make the tattie scones:
This is all about mashed potatoes but firm mashed potatoes so don’t make it fluffy and creamy like you’re going to eat it, with lashings of butter and milk. You don’t want to add anything to the potatoes when you’re mashing them except seasoning and a little butter.

Once the mash is cold, mix with flour using a ratio of 5 parts mash to 1 part flour. Get stuck in with your hands and work it until it feels like a ball of dough – drizzle a little oil if it’s still crumbly to help bind it together. Divide into tennis ball sized amounts and chill for 30 minutes to 2 hours.

Place the cold mash dough ball between two sheets of baking parchment or wax paper and roll out until it’s about the thickness of a pound coin. You want scones that are blini sized so use your smallest cookie/pastry cutter (or shot glass) to carefully cut out your scones.

Homemade tattie scones | fifigoesnom.com

Homemade tattie scones | fifigoesnom.com

Put a frying pan over a medium heat and add a little bit of oil. When hot, fry the scones for 4 minutes on each side.

Homemade tattie scones browning nicely | fifigoesnom.com

Homemade tattie scones browning nicely | fifigoesnom.com

Excess dough can be rerolled , but store any dough you’re not using in the fridge between rolling as you want it to be chilled and firm when you’re ready to roll it out.

To make the neeps:
Aim for a 3:1 ratio of neeps to carrot. Peel and cube, then boil for 20-25 minutes or until a fork goes easily through a cube. Drain and roughly mash (the bits of carrot poking through look great I think!) with some butter, milk and salt, and pepper to taste.

Roughly mashed neeps and carrots | fifigoesnom.com

Roughly mashed neeps and carrots | fifigoesnom.com

Assemble!

Cook the haggis according to the packet instructions and then break up in a bowl.

Grab a tattie scone and spoon/smear the mashed neeps and carrots on top. Take care not to overload it otherwise you’ll lose the taste of haggis, and make a mess when you’re trying to fit it in your mouth!

Add some red onion marmalade on top. It’s tempting to load this on but again you’ll risk losing the taste of haggis if you whack too much on.

Top with haggis and then sprinkle with snipped chives for a little colour.

I defy you not to eat your own body weight in these…

Inspired by Burns | fifigoesnom.com

Inspired by Burns | fifigoesnom.com

 

Haggis, Neeps & Wee Tattie Scone Canapes with Red Onion Marmalade
A bite-sized take on the traditional Burns Night supper.
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Stuff you’ll need...
  1. Haggis (Macsween’s microwaveable haggis provides a good amount for making lots of these)
  2. Cold mashed potatoes
  3. Flour
  4. Mashed neeps and carrots
  5. Red onion marmalade
  6. Chives, snipped for decoration
  7. Butter
  8. Milk
  9. Salt and pepper for seasoning
To make the tattie scones:
  1. This is all about mashed potatoes but firm mashed potatoes so don’t make it fluffy and creamy like you’re going to eat it, with lashings of butter and milk. You don’t want to add anything to the potatoes when you’re mashing them except seasoning and a little butter.
  2. Once the mash is cold, mix with flour using a ratio of 5 parts mash to 1 part flour. Get stuck in with your hands and work it until it feels like a ball of dough – drizzle a little oil if it’s still crumbly to help bind it together. Divide into tennis ball sized amounts and chill for 30 minutes to 2 hours.
  3. Place the cold mash dough ball between two sheets of baking parchment or wax paper and roll out until it’s about the thickness of a pound coin. You want scones that are blini sized so use your smallest cookie/pastry cutter (or shot glass) to carefully cut out your scones.
  4. Put a frying pan over a medium heat and add a little bit of oil. When hot, fry the scones for 4 minutes on each side.
  5. Excess dough can be rerolled , but store any dough you’re not using in the fridge between rolling as you want it to be chilled and firm when you’re ready to roll it out.
To make the neeps:
  1. Aim for a 3:1 ratio of neeps to carrot. Peel and cube, then boil for 20-25 minutes or until a fork goes easily through a cube. Drain and roughly mash (the bits of carrot poking through look great I think!) with some butter, milk and salt, and pepper to taste.
Assemble!
  1. Cook the haggis according to the packet instructions and then break up in a bowl.
  2. Grab a tattie scone and spoon/smear the mashed neeps and carrots on top. Take care not to overload it otherwise you’ll lose the taste of haggis, and make a mess when you’re trying to fit it in your mouth!
  3. Add some red onion marmalade on top. It’s tempting to load this on but again you’ll risk losing the taste of haggis if you whack too much on.
  4. Top with haggis and then sprinkle with snipped chives for a little colour.
fifigoesnom http://www.fifigoesnom.com/
Tarragon Lamb Meatballs in a Tomato Basil Sauce

Tarragon Lamb Meatballs in a Tomato Basil Sauce

We seem to be eating a lot of lamb at the moment, not that I’m complaining as it’s such a fave in our house, and since we’re smack bang in the middle of Scottish lamb season it seems a shame not to indulge!  So here’s another recipe from my #whambamthankyoulamb afternoon with QMS, and one I’ve been looking forward to making again to check it was as tasty as I remembered. It totally was if the happy smile on Hubby’s face is anything to go by 🙂

This recipe wins on taste and effort and really is perfect for a midweek make. The meatballs take next to no time to roll up and can even be done in advance and left in the fridge for a few hours until you’re ready to cook. The cherry tomatoes and fresh basil lend the sauce a freshness that I promise you’ll come back for, and if – like me – you’re thinking that tarragon and lamb is an odd combination let me assure you that it really really works. Really.

Tarragon Lamb Meatballs in a Tomato Sauce
Serves 4
Lamb and tarragon meatballs make for a quick and tasty supper.
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Prep Time
50 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr 20 min
Prep Time
50 min
Cook Time
30 min
Total Time
1 hr 20 min
Stuff you’ll need…
  1. 500g lean lamb mince
  2. 3 cloves garlic, finely diced
  3. 1 large white onion, finely diced
  4. 1 slice of stale white bread, grated or zizzed into crumbs
  5. 1 egg, lightly beaten
  6. handful of fresh tarragon leaves, gently chopped
  7. 25g fresh basil
  8. 2 x 400g tins of chopped tomatoes
  9. 200g cherry tomatoes
  10. pinch of sugar
  11. splash of balsamic
  12. 400g penne pasta
  13. salt and pepper to season
  14. 50g parmesan shavings (optional)
  15. CSI-style vinyl gloves (optional)
Cook!
  1. Mix the lamb, half the garlic and onion, breadcrumbs, egg, a pinch of salt and pepper and tarragon leaves. Get those CSI gloves on if you have them and roll yourself 12 golfball-ish sized meatballs. Cover with clingfilm before popping into the fridge for 30 minutes or so – the fridge bit is optional and you can skip it if you’re rushed, but it does help the meatballs hold together better when you’re cooking them. Not a mealbreaker if you can’t.
  2. While the meatballs are chilling, preheat your oven to 200 °C/400 °F/gas mark 6. (If you’re skipping the chilling then probably best to do this bit first.)
  3. If you have a casserole that is as happy in the oven as it is on the stove (and vice versa) then you can do this all in one pot. If you don’t, do your frying in a standard frying pan and then transfer to a casserole for the oven, or just cook the whole thing on the stove.
  4. Put some oil in your casserole or pan and cook the meatballs in batches until they are mostly browned all over but not cooked through. Remove to a plate (with kitchen roll to soak up some of the excess oil) and set to one side.
  5. Drain the oil from the pan, then gently sauté the rest of the onions and garlic for a couple of minutes before adding the chopped tomatoes. Season with salt, then add a pinch of sugar and a goodly splash of balsamic vinegar to cut through the acidity of the tomatoes. Bring up to the boil and leave simmering for 3–4 minutes.
  6. Next, return the meatballs to the pan along with the cherry tomatoes and basil. Give it all a gentle stir so as not to break your meatballs, and bring to a simmer. Once it’s simmering, pop a lid over it and place in the oven for about 20–25 minutes (or leave on top of the stove for the same amount of time).
  7. Cook your pasta according to the instructions on the packet and drain so that it’s ready when the meatballs are.
  8. Remove the pan of meatballs from the oven. For best noms, remove the meatballs from the sauce onto a plate and then add the drained pasta to the pan and mix well with the sauce. Add the meatballs back in and mix again so that everything is coated in the tomato sauce.
  9. Plate up, sprinkling over some parmesan shavings and a few sprigs of basil. Serve up, and marvel at the unusual but totally tasty marriage of tarragon and lamb 🙂
fifigoesnom http://www.fifigoesnom.com/
Three Chimneys Hot Marmalade Pudding

Three Chimneys Hot Marmalade Pudding

I have no idea where the time has gone!  We popped stateside to visit Hubby’s folks for a couple of weeks in September and then I blinked and it’s almost November!  Which is probably just as well, because this delicious steamed pudding is perfect for the onset of Autumn.  As I sit here listening to the rain I think I can safely say that the comfort food season is officially open 😉

A couple of years ago we had some friends come visit us from New York. It was their first time in Scotland so we took them on the mother of all road trips, up through the Highlands and all the way across to Skye. The pair of them are as fond of good food as we are so having dragged them right up to the doorstep of the Three Chimneys it would have been a shame not to cross it and go in…

A meal at the Three Chimneys deserves a blog post all of its own, it really is that good, but today I’m going to rave just about the pudding which was worth the 400 mile round trip alone – the sponge was seductively dark but surprisingly light, and tasted most definitely and deliciously of marmalade which, as you might have noticed, is a particular favourite flavour of mine 🙂 If you ever ever make it up there don’t even look at anything else on the dessert menu, it will only tempt you away from one of the best puddings you’ll ever have.

Alternatively, stay home and have a go at making it yourself! We watched Nick Nairn make this on Saturday Kitchen one morning and it looked really really easy, like what-have-you-got-to-lose easy, so we tried it out courtesy of a recipe in The Guardian and it really was as easy as NN made it look. But, and probably most importantly, it comes a damn close second to the real thing!  We made this as our contribution for the family Christmas dinner last year and the parentals have already pre-ordered it for this year 🙂

The Three Chimneys serves theirs with a Drambuie custard but Hubby and I found a nice vanilla ice cream goes just as well, so serve up with whichever you prefer.

This pudding supposedly freezes well but we’ve never had enough leftover to try (!) If you do freeze it though, you can apparently reheat it by steaming it again, or popping it in the microwave for a few seconds. Hubby has plans to pan fry slices in a little butter but see comment above re lack of leftovers…

Three Chimneys Hot Marmalade Pudding
A sweet citrusy steamed pudding that is perfect for a cold night.
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Stuff you’ll need…
  1. 150g fine brown breadcrumbs
  2. 25g self-raising wholemeal flour (or white self-raising flour)
  3. 120g soft light brown sugar
  4. 120g butter
  5. 8 tbsp coarse-cut marmalade, plus 3 tbsp extra for serving
  6. 3 large eggs
  7. 1 rounded teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  8. Other stuff you’ll need…
  9. 3 pint pudding basin
  10. Large mixing bowl
  11. Small saucepan
  12. Large saucepan or stewpot, deep enough to fit the pudding basin inside with the pan lid firmly on
Mix!
  1. Start by buttering the pudding basin well, and then set to one side.
  2. Place the breadcrumbs, flour and sugar into the mixing bowl.
  3. Melt the butter and marmalade in a saucepan over a gentle heat. Pour the melted ingredients over the dry ingredients in the mixing bowl and then mix it all together thoroughly.
  4. In a seperate bowl, whisk the eggs until they’re frothy, and then beat gently into the pudding mixture until it is all blended together well.
  5. Dissolve the bicarbonate of soda in 1 tablespoon of cold water before stirring into the pudding mixture, which will increase in volume as it absorbs the bicarb.
  6. Finally, spoon the mixture into the buttered basin. Cover it with close-fitting lid or, alternatively, make a lid with circles of buttered greaseproof paper and foil, pleated together across the centre and tied securely around the rim of the basin (if that made no sense then click here to watch a very good video explaining what to do).
  7. Lower the pudding basin into the saucepan/stewpot of boiling water (the water should reach halfway up the side). Cover and simmer for two hours, checking the water throughout and topping up when needed (trust me, it will need it!).
  8. When the two hours is up, carefully remove the pudding basin and remove the lid. Put a plate on top, turn the basin upside down and wait for the pudding to unmould. It should do this on its own but if it needs help then give it a sound tap on top, or squeeze if the basin is plastic, and it should slide on off.
  9. Remove the basin and rejoice in the dark steamed perfection of your pudding!
  10. Melt the extra marmalade in a small saucepan, then drizzle all over the pudding as you’re serving it.
fifigoesnom http://www.fifigoesnom.com/
Lemony Scotch Lamb Fillets

Lemony Scotch Lamb Fillets

Lamb is my favourite red meat, hands down. Roast has to be lamb, curry has to be lamb (but pathia or kofta?), and the pie has always got to be shepherd’s, never cottage. So when I got invited by Quality Meat Scotland to an afternoon of sharing their new recipes for cooking Scotch Lamb with Scottish food bloggers I couldn’t say yes quickly enough! And what a fantastic afternoon it was, and not just because it culminated in a plate of this 🙂

Hubby works for Scotland Food & Drink so we usually try to shop the Scottish options when we can (he makes me put things back if they’re not Scottish, honestly!!) but I learnt a couple of things at the Scotch Lamb afternoon that made me even more determined to shop Scottish when it comes to lamb.

Did you know…

1. that to qualify as Scotch Lamb, the wee bleaters have to have spent every day of their lives in Scotland – born, raised and processed?
2. that Scotch Lamb was one of the first red meats in Europe to have been granted the Protected Geographical Indication status?
3. that apparently we Scots eat only half as much lamb as the English…! #gobsmacked!

Scotch Lamb is just coming in to season now and the season continues until February/March, so there really isn’t a better time to tuck in and support Scottish, ESPECIALLY since it’s Scottish Food & Drink Fortnight right now!  Not to mention all those nasty food miles you’ll be saving…

But back to the afternoon! It was held at the Edinburgh New Town Cookery School where we got to watch one of their chefs demonstrate three fairly different recipes, all using different cuts of Scotch Lamb. The first was a Lamb Biryani, which went against convention and used neck for a relatively quick cook – delicious! Second was Lamb Meatballs with Penne… I had never heard of of using tarragon with lamb before but it is a properly winning combination and one I can’t wait to try again – deliciouser! Last, and zomg not least, was the Lemony Lamb Fillet which was the most delicious dish of the three! It’s not a cut of lamb I’ve ever cooked with before, but that is going to change…

What I loved about all three of the recipes, other than the downright tastiness of them, were just how quick and easy they were to cook. And to prove it wasn’t just because the chef was good at her job we all got to pick one of the three dishes to try cooking ourselves right there and then (fyi, the Lemony Fillets seemed to be most everyone’s favourite!). It also gave all of us a chance to chat while we cooked, which was awesome as some of the bloggers were ones I’d been following for a while so it was kind of like meeting my blogging heroes 🙂

Socialising and eating aside, I came away from the afternoon wondering why I’d never really thought about cooking lamb for midweek suppers, but I realised that all of my lamb recipes are real labours of love that are better suited to the weekend. Not anymore! In fact, I’m already planning on making those tarragon meatballs tomorrow, they were that good.

If you’re interested in checking out the official recipe it’s here, along with all the other new Scotch Lamb recipes which I recommend having a peek at, but I’m going to write this up the way I cooked it on the day because it was absolutely lush, properly melt in the mouth stuff, and I don’t want to change a thing 😉

#WhamBamThankYouLamb

Lemony Scotch Lamb Fillets
Serves 2
Tender lamb, rubbed with garlic and lemon, cooked on the griddle and dribbled over with mint sauce.
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
25 min
Stuff you’ll need…
  1. 300g Scotch lamb fillet, all fat removed and sliced lengthways into three strips
  2. Finely grated zest of 1/2 lemon
  3. 1 clove garlic, very finely chopped
  4. 1/2 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
  5. 2 tsp olive oil 300g new potatoes, halved if large
  6. 20g butter
Bought mint sauce OR…
  1. a large handful of fresh mint leaves
  2. 1 tbsp sugar
  3. 1/2 tsp salt
  4. 75 ml cider or malt vinegar
Other stuff you’ll need…
  1. pestle and mortar, or a small bowl and rolling pin (or spoon)
  2. griddle pan, or large frying pan
Cook!
  1. First things first, set your griddle pan over a high heat and leave it until it’s searing hot and literally smoking. Start a saucepan of water heating too – new potatoes, unlike their larger non-new brethren, should go into hot water and not cold apparently.
  2. While you’re waiting, rub the olive oil onto the lamb and then loosely sprinkle over half the lemon zest and garlic before pressing the flavouring lightly into place. Give it all a good grind of black pepper and then turn over and do exactly the same to the other side.
  3. As soon as the water is boiling, lightly salt and then drop in your potatoes and leave them on the boil for about 10 to 15 minutes, or until they’re tender.
  4. Next, make the so-ridiculously-easy-you’ll-never-buy-it-ready-made-again mint sauce. Finely chop the mint and put into the mortar or a small bowl, sprinkle the sugar and salt on top and then crush to release all that lovely minty juice from the leaves. If you don’t have a pestle and mortar, the rounded end of a rolling pin will do the job just as well, or failing that, squash it all together firmly with the back of a spoon. Add the vinegar – you might want to hold some back and taste first, adding more vinegar until you hit your preferred sweet/sour mix – and stir together well. Set aside until needed.
  5. By now your griddle should be smoking hot, perfect for searing the lamb fillets and giving them that lovely chargrilled flavour. Sear for about 2 to 3 minutes per side which should be enough to leave the middle perfectly pink but not bloody (if it’s too pink, just pop it back on the griddle pan for another minute or 2).
  6. THE IMPORTANT BIT! When you remove the fillets from the pan, cover with foil and leave to rest for about the same amount of time the lamb was cooking, so between 4 to 6 minutes depending. This allows all the lovely juices to be reabsorbed, giving you a far far juicier eat. Don’t be tempted to skip this and tuck right in, your lamb will be drier for it.
  7. While the meat is resting, drain the potatoes and then return them to the hot pan. If you’re not quite ready for them yet just pop the lid on to keep them warm.
  8. When you are ready, add the butter to the pan and break the potatoes up with the back of a fork so that they’re less mashed and more bashed. Plate the potatoes and then slice your lamb fillets and lay on top. Finally, daub with the mint sauce, and then tuck in.
fifigoesnom http://www.fifigoesnom.com/
Great chieftain o’ the pudding-race!

Great chieftain o’ the pudding-race!

Hubby and I do not need an excuse to break out the haggis and will happily devour it in most any of its incredibly versatile size shapes or forms.  Not content with its traditional chums of neeps and tatties, I’ve tried it Chinese style in spring rolls, Indian style in samosas, Mexican style in quesedillas, poshed up in filo pastry parcels with a sweet plum sauce, deep fried out the chippie, not to mention as an unmissable part of a “full Scottish” breakfast fry up!  I’ve even recently been sent a recipe for haggis lasagne which I’m very very intrigued by… (watch this space!).  But on Burns Night it really has to be eaten traditional style, which means the ‘holy trinity’ of haggis, neeps and tatties.

So we couldn’t let Burns Night go by without honouring Rabbie with a plateful of the good stuff, and the good stuff is hands down Macsweens!  Much easier to pop into the supermarket and buy one of theirs than chasing down one of the damn beasties in the wilds yourself 😉

I won’t lie and say that the ingredients aren’t a little offputting… In fact, I had quite the fight to get Hubby to try it at all but once he did he was quite smitten and probably has it more than me these days!  And if you can eat a hot dog then you can eat haggis, and at least the offputting in haggis is quality offputting…

But once you get past what’s in it, it really is properly delicious.  All peppery and spicy with an earthy and grainy and chewy texture that I’m really not doing justice to! Just trust me and try it, you might find yourself pleasantly surprised 🙂

Back to Burns Night 2013!  Here’s the before picture…

Haggis, Neeps & Tatties | fifigoesnom

Haggis, Neeps & Tatties | fifigoesnom

 

 

 

And here’s the after picture, with a requisite shot of whisky in the glass as well as in the cream sauce (delicious recipe courtesy of The Macsween Haggis Bible).

Haggis, Neeps & Tatties | fifigoesnom

Haggis, Neeps & Tatties | fifigoesnom

 

 And the after after picture 🙂  Haggis all gone…

Haggis, Neeps & Tatties, the empty plate version | fifigoesnom

Haggis, Neeps & Tatties, the empty plate version | fifigoesnom

 

And for desert, who could resist these cute “Babbie Haggies” jelly belly beans which, much as I love Scotland’s national dish, are only haggis coloured and not haggis flavoured!

Haggis, savoury and sweet | fifigoesnom

Haggis, savoury and sweet | fifigoesnom

 

Happy Birthday, Rabbie!