Skip to comments.A squeamish cook's guide to haggis - 250th anniversary of the birth of Robert Burns
Posted on 01/15/2009 8:06:31 PM PST by bruinbirdman
Thankfully, you don't have to make your own haggis; you can get it straight from the chill cabinet at your local Sainsbury's, Waitrose and Marks & Spencer - in fact, you can even get a lentil-packed vegetarian version if you so desire. In the run-up to Burns Night, Macsweens of Edinburgh exports up to 800 tonnes around the world, from Canada to Kazakhstan, which is an awful lot of haggis by anyone's standards. And Americans will go to extraordinary lengths to lay their hands on a haggis (importing sheep's lungs is banned in the States), even smuggling them through Customs to make sure that their Burns Night has that authentic Scottish touch.
Haggis is a braw dish, so long as ye dinnae look at the ingredients, said one canny Scotsman - and how right he was. A haggis recipe from my mother-in-law's 1975 Glasgow School of Cookery book (see recipe, right) makes me queasy just reading it.
Any recipe that involves grating liver (if life's too short to stuff a mushroom, it's definitely too short to grate offal), washing your sheep bag, ensuring that your windpipe is hanging out of the pan and then boiling it for three hours until it is warm-reekin is not for the faint-hearted.
And what exactly is meant by the ingredient pluck? A quick inspection of the dictionary reveals it to be the liver, heart, lungs and windpipe of the sheep - a gruesome combination on any shopping list. Times may be tough and the recession may have heightened the appeal of the cheap cut, but there are limits. Much as I love lamb, I draw the line at wolfing down its vital organs.
Which is odd really, because to my mind this strange, furless creature looks as unappetising as it's possible for food to
(Excerpt) Read more at timesonline.co.uk ...
Haggis is a wonderful thing. The tex-mex fusion I make is pretty darn good, too.
...wasn’t there a Monty Python Skit on this “Glorious” dish / meal...
“God created Haggis to train the faithful.”
One cannot go against the word of God.
There is nothing more distasteful than haggis.
What civilization ever concocted this abomination?
I swear haggis was invent by two scots on a dare to see which one could come up with the most bizarre thing to eat.
Black pudding as I understand it came in second....
My theory is that all of Scottish cuisine is based on a dare.
Picture a Scots lad at his Pub for a late night, Darks and Haggis, for sure.
He climbs the trail to his sheep herders cabin for the night but does not make it and naps on the side of the trail.
In the morning, two young Lasies walk by and see the herder sleeping at the side of the trail. They decide to check hout his "Manhood" under his kilt and do, with one of them taking a blue ribbon from her hair and tieing it on his member.
He wakes, stands to relieve himself and sees the ribbon.
His words are, with a Scottish burr I can't type say:
Laddie, I don't know where were you've been or what you did, but I am Proud You Took First Place.
Have a good evening.
My ancestors going back to Great, Greats is almost 100% Scottish, with one Irish girl in their somewhere. Despite that, the idea of eating Haggis makes me weak in the knees.
Of course my own Father used to love Hog’s head cheese, chitlins and baked Possum.
"Smithers, release the hounds."
He doesn't even need a metaphor. Brilliant.
Like a ballentine, without the chicken fat.
Can't stand the stuff warm, way too greasy....
I cook deer hearts and livers for my old dog. She loves them. I can’t imagine that I would get that hungry.
I’ll not be squeamish o’er ye’r Haggis so long as ye dinna forget the ‘neeps and tatties!
I vaguely remember eating “scrapple” as a wee girl, and finding it quite tasty.
Should I go get some counseling?
It is good eats.
As if any true Scotsman would waste good whiskey after a dish of haggis. Or waste good whiskey at all.
I went to one of those on Robert Burns day in England in 1996. I liked the Haggis, but then, I like everything.
The perfect gift.:)
We are having a "Celtic" Christmas dinner next year.....hubby is threatening haggis....
Sorry...not a thing to ping me to when I’m a little queasy...*eep*
Address to a Haggis
Fair fa' your honest, sonsie face,
Great chieftain o' the puddin-race!
Aboon them a' ye tak your place,
Painch, tripe, or thairm:
Weel are ye wordy of a grace
As lang's my arm.
The groaning trencher there ye fill,
Your hudies like a distant hill,
Your pin wad help to mend a mill
In time o' need,
While thro' your pores the dews distil
Like amber bead.
His knife see rustic Labour dight,
An' cut ye up wi' ready slight,
Trenching your gushing entrails bright,
Like onie ditch;
And then, O what a glorious sight,
Then horn for horn, they stretch an' strive:
Deil tak the hindmost, on they drive,
Till a' their weel-swall'd kytes belyve
Are bent like drums;
Then auld Guidman, maist like to rive,
Is there that owre his French ragout,
Or olio that wad staw a sow,
Or fricassee wad mak her spew
Wi perfect scunner,
Looks down wi' sneering, scornfu' view
On sic a dinner?
Poor devil! see him owre his trash,
As fecl;ess as a wither'd rash,
His spindle shank a guid whip-lash,
His nieve a nit;
Tho' bluidy flood or field to dash,
O how unfit.
But mark the Rustic, haggis-fed,
The trembling earth resounds his tread,
Clap in his walie nieve a blade,
He'll make it whistle;
An' legs, an' arms, an' heads will sned
Like taps o' thrissle.
Ye pow'rs, wha mak mankind your care,
And dish them out their bill o' fare,
Auld Scotland wants nae skinking ware,
That jaups in luggies;
But if ye wish her gratfu' prayer,
Gie her a Haggis!
Yep. The pipes and everything. It really was a fantastic ceremony.
I’ve only seen it on tape and looked wonderful.
They did at the one I went to.
Friends joined a group tour of the UK where they overnighted in castles along the way.
They ended up calling it the ADC Tour, Another Darn Castle Tour, but, very impressed, they raved about the haggis ceremony.
"Git yer haggis, right here. Chopped heart n' lungs. Boiled in a wee sheeps' stomach. Taste's as good as it sounds. Good for what ails ya.... ugh. Ugh."
Pass the mushy peas!!!