Do Burns Night with a twist
Burns Night, for the uninitiated, is a fabulous feast celebrating Scotland’s legendary bard Robert Burns (it’s also my excuse to indulge my love of all things tartan: skirt, top, scarf, the works) and it’s held every year on 25 January. The traditional way to do it is with neeps (turnips), tatties (potatoes) and haggis (oatmeal, spices and sheep’s offal!). Hand on heart, I love haggis. But I know it’s not for everyone. So, if you or one of your guests is on the squeamish side and you fancy hosting a Burns Supper, here’s an alternative main course featuring prime Scotch Beef.
Burns was notorious for his love of wine, whisky and women so it’s no wonder that Burns Suppers are brilliantly bawdy affairs. Whether they’re traditional or informal, most have the following ingredients: The Selkirk Grace, Toast to the Haggis (or Steak Pie!), Toast to the Immortal Memory of Robert Burns, Toast to the Lassies. And last but not least the Reply, which is the lassie’s chance to answer back (my favourite bit of course, as my fiery redhead tendencies come out full force. Run for the hills, laddies).
The night usually finishes off with a rousing rendition of Auld Lang Syne then everyone rolls home.
Scotch Beef Barley SoupStart your Burns Supper with melting Gruyere cheese toasts topping this soup – a mouth-watering way to start.
Haggis Bon Bon with whisky marmaladeHands up. This IS haggis. But it’s so tasty and the bon bons are so little, you could try sneaking this starter under your squeamish friend’s radar and see what happens. Bet they’d love it.
Scotch Beef Steak and Mushroom PieNow for your main course – and who can resist a stonking steak pie? Using beautiful Scotch Beef, it just melts in the mouth.
Cranachan This is my favourite Scottish pudding, Burns Night or not. Juicy raspberries, oozing double cream, fiery whisky and crunchy toasted oatmeal (all from Scotland!), folded together. The hardest bit is the pronunciation – kran-a-kan – but it’s easy once you know how.
TabletTablet is a Scottish fudge and it’s fantastic with coffee. Crumbly, sugary, indulgent deliciousness. I love this recipe and hope you do too.
Whether you’re the real McCoy or a pseudo-Scot, have a brilliant Burns Night!