The steak pie became the national New Year’s dinner dish in Scotland because New Year’s Day was not traditionally taken as a holiday, (Western society has only been celebrating New Year for the past 400 years.) Families were too busy to cook and bought big steak pies from their local butcher instead. It was in 1871 that Scotland declared January 1st as a national holiday and then wasn’t until 1971 that Scotland got January 2 as another bank holiday.
Butcher-bought steak pie remains popular today, I suspect partly because most Scots are too hung-over to think about cooking on New Year’s Day. Hogmanay & New Years Day is about more than seeing in the bells with a dram of whisky and the best New Year street party in the world, the traditional celebrations continue well into the next day. In fact, it’s probably partly due to the over indulgence of alcohol that the ritual Ne’erday dinner continues to be such a vital part of New Year for so many Scots. The Traditional Steak Pie is round or oval in shape, which symbolises the end of one year with the seamless beginning of the next.
I do like to make my own steak pie and this recipe dates back to my Grannies and Aunties recipes. They key to a good steak pie is the meat, good quality Scottish Beef is key and it’s important to slow cook until it falls apart. I always make the night before too, this allows the gravy/juices to soak into the meat for an amazing flavour.
500g Braising or Stewing Steak (rump steak is also good)
1 Large Onion, Chopped
1 Carrot, Peeled & Sliced
400ml Beef Stock
1-2 Tbsp Beef Gravy Granules
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
Salt & Black Pepper
2 Tbsp Cornflour
1 egg beaten for wash
1 Ready to Roll Puff Pastry
Heat 1 Tbsp oil in a large pan on medium to high heat. Pat dry the meat and coat with the cornflour and season. Brown the meat in the pan, remove with a slotted spoon.
Add 1 Tbsp oil to the pan and add in the onions, cook for a few minutes to soften and brown. Add back to the pan the meat and the carrots along with the beef stock, bring to the boil and reduce to a gentle simmer (very low heat), cover with a lid and slow cook for about 2 hours.
With a slotted spoon carefully remove the meat & vegetables and decant into an oven proof pie dish, with the gravy still in the pan add the gravy granules and mix through on medium heat to thicken up the gravy slightly. (You don’t want it too thick as it will thicken overnight) Pour the gravy over the meat in the oven dish, allow to cool, cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.
When ready to bake, roll your pastry out and using a pastry brush, brush egg wash around the edge of your pie dish, take the pastry and lay over the dish, pressing the edges to seal. Trim any excess pastry. (which you could use for a wee design) Using a knife, make a small hole in the middle to allow the steam to escape. Brush the pastry with the remaining egg wash and bake in a pre heated oven at 200 deg C for about 25-30 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown and cooked.
Cullen Skink is an authentic Scottish Thick Soup from Cullen, North East Scotland. It’s main ingredients are Smoked Haddock, Potatoes and Onion, which makes a lovely home comforting dish that lasts through the years. It’s one of our most popular dishes in my household, especially in the Autumn/Winter Seasons. Traditionally it is served with bread.
Initially, Cullen Skink referred to a type of broth made with the scrapings of beef from the front legs of cattle, hence ‘Skink’ as this means shin. Hard times in the early 1890s left the Northern people unable to buy this product. By this time, Cullen Harbour (completed in 1819) had become the thriving centre of herring fishing and the village also specialised in the production of smoked haddock. With many families in the local villages having a fishing background, they turned to smoked haddock which was in plentiful supply. By using smoked haddock and various other products all put together, a distinctive delicious soup was made.
Makes 2 large bowls
2 Smoked Haddock Fillets
1 White Onion, Diced
1/2 Leek, sliced, white part only
350g White Potatoes, peeled and diced
100ml Single Cream or Creme Friache
1 Bay Leaf
Salt & Pepper to taste
Handful of Chopped Parsley
Melt the butter in a pan and add the onion & leeks, cook for a few minutes then add the potatoes and continue to cook for a few minutes.
Add the milk, bay leaf & season. Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer. Gently add the haddock to the pot and simmer gently for about 15 minutes.
Using a slotted spoon remove the haddock,from the pan place onto a chopping board and remove the skin, break into chunks, add back to the pan along with the cream and mix through, heat through gently for a few minutes.
Remove the Bay leaf and sprinkle over the parsley then serve into bowls.
Mince ‘n’ Tatties (Mince & Potatoes) is a traditional Scottish dish and one that will never go away. Historically it was popular in school canteens because it was easy to make batches and feed lots of children. I grew up with mince ‘n’ tatties, at least once a week we would have this dish, whether it be at home, my grannies house or my Auntie’s it was a household meal that satisfied everyone every time.
There is no wrong or right way to make this, but does need to include minced beef and root vegetables such as onions & carrots. Here is my version and always a winner in my house. The only debate we always have is Brown Sauce or Tomato Sauce? Maybe you’ll make it and let me know…lol!
Best served with a buttered Scottish plain outsider slice too…….oh….this is a must! Or even a Scottish plain mince ‘n’ tattie piece (Sandwich)! Haven’t tried it….go on I dare you….you won’t look back…trust me!
For the Mince
250g Scottish Steak Mince
1 onion – chopped
1 Carrot – chopped
Handful of garden peas (frozen is fine)
200ml Beef Stock
1 tbsp Beef Gravy granules
Salt & Black pepper
Splash of Worcestershire Sauce (optional)
For the Tatties
400g Potatoes (ones good for mash)
2 tbsp butter
Heat a little oil in a pan on medium heat and brown the onions, then add the mince, season with plenty black pepper and salt to taste and brown.
Add into the pot the carrots, peas and beef stock, mix and bring to the boil, then simmer gently for about 30 minutes.
Next stir through the gravy granules to thicken the sauce, cook for a further 5 minutes. At this stage if using worcestershire sauce, then stir through.
Meanwhile, cook potatoes in slightly salted water until soft, drain and mash with the butter.
Go on, go back to your school days and use an ice cream scoop for yer tatties! In our households as kids and still to this day, we wouldn’t eat it like this…..oh no…..we would mix the tatties with the mince on the plate then cover in sauce….this is where the debate of Brown or Tomato sauce comes in…lol! Sometimes too we would make a piece with scottish plain bread and the mix of M&T’s in the middle…oh yum! You gotta try this. Proper home comfort food.
Scotland’s abundant natural larder is amazing, from Stornoway Black Pudding, Aberdeen Angus Beef, Highland Wagu from Perthshire, Arbroath Smokies, Shetland Salmon and of course our delicious rasperberries, all washed down with our amazing Whisky’s.
This trail guide is a perfect guide for foodies, whether its a whisky trail or chocolate trail you will find the best here. Food and drink scotland
You can also check out all our excellence awards here. Excellence awards So don’t just take my word for it, come visit, come eat, come drink, come have some fun!
This is a Scottish Traditional Dish, made up of mainly Potatoes, onion & cabbage. I love this dish it is such a warming comfort food dish but healthy and nutritious. It was chilly & wet here today, so this was the perfect dish to go with my chicken tonight.
250g potatoes – skin on and cut into small chunks
200g Turnip – cut into small chunks
1 white onion – finely sliced
1/2 green cabbage – finely sliced
Salt & Rainbow pepper (or black pepper)
1 egg yolk
40g low fat cheddar cheese
Preheat the oven to 200 deg
Place the potatoes and turnip in a large pan salted boiling water and gently boil until slightly softened.
Meanwhile, spray a fry pan with low fat oil and cook the onion & cabbage until softened and slightly browned.
Once potatoes etc have softened, drain and add the the cabbage pan, mix and gently mash, not too much as your still want some chunks.
Decant into an oven proof dish and mix with the egg yolk, season with salt & pepper and sprinkle the cheese evenly over the top.
Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes.
Serve. Yummy! (A little splash of Worcestershire Sauce with this is amazing also)
Its Burns Night tonight (25th January)……..Happy Burns Night Everyone!
To help celebrate we definitely had to have our haggis, neeps (turnip) & tatties (potatoes) dish. However, I fancied doing something different. I have never tried a Scotch egg before so this was what I set out to do. OMG! these were absolutely delicious and very easy to make.
300g Haggis (Good Quality one)
240g Pork Meat
1/2 bunch chopped chives
Sea Salt & black cracked pepper
5 Large eggs – (1 for the dipping)
1/2 cup flour
60g fine breadcrumbs
60g oatmeal (you can blitz scotts porridge oats into fine crumbs for this)
Boil the eggs in a pan for about 6 minutes, then remove and place in an iced water bowl to stop the cooking process. When ready to use, peel shell.
Mix together the Haggis, Pork Meat, Chives & salt & pepper in a bowl until combined.
Get ready your little production line of whisked egg, flour and breadcrumbs/oatmeal mix.
Take a handful of the haggis mixture and mould into your hand like a cup and place 1 egg on top, take another handful of haggis and mould around the egg, doing this very carefully of course. You can use your thumb to help smooth the mixture over the egg.
Then place firstly into the flour, then the egg, then the crumb mixture.
When ready to cook, heat a pan of oil to around 170 deg. Cook for about 7 minutes until golden brown. Remove and pat excess oil off with a tissue.
Serve with neeps & tatties. Or whatever you like. A nice creamy whiskey sauce goes very well with this too. Find a recipe here:- Haggis Sauce
These are a traditional little treat in Scotland, you can have them 2 ways:- 1 with marshmallow in the middle or as I’ve baked with jam. Either way they are lovely. These are perfect for Christmas time and they keep for up to 4 days in an air tight container.
Makes about 8-12
50g unsalted butter
50g caster sugar
pinch of salt
225g self raising flour, sifted
1 tbsp milk
Good raspberry jam (I like Mackay’s)
confectioner’s (powdered) sugar (icing sugar)
unsweetened shredded coconut (do not use sweetened)
Pre heat oven to 200 deg
Cream the butter and sugar with the pinch of salt. Add the egg with the flour and mix well.
Stir in the milk and rest of flour to make a stiff dough
Divide into 16 equal pieces and roll into balls. Place on parchment or silicone sheet lined cookie trays, leaving a bit of space for them to grow. Press down a little. If you’d like smaller snowballs, divide into 24 pieces.
Bake for 8-10 minutes until very lightly golden brown.
Remove and cool
Sandwich each cookie together with raspberry jam (not too much)
Leave for half an hour for jam to set.
Combine about 1-2 cups of icing sugar with enough water or milk to make a runny glaze in which to dip the snowballs. Have a bowl of shredded coconut ready. Dip the snowballs in the glaze and allow extra glaze to drip off.
Next dip in the coconut and ensure fully covered, set aside.
I had an amazing day at this years Food & Drink festival in Loch Lomond, the weather was shining, the food was cooking, the drinks were pouring and my senses were going crazy as I walk around. So many new flavours and discoveries.
My favourite were these lovely Italian Whipped Cream delights and at only 70 calories whats not to like? Caramel, Hazelnut, Baileys Cream, White Chocolate there were so many flavours to choose from. Thank you to Ellies Cupcake Kitchen , this has given me some inspiration to try my own version……lol!
It was a beautiful sunny day, the band was playing fab tunes, everyone was happy……great day. Here are some pics of my day I’d like to share with you.
I just love everything about this fortnight, it brings local & new food and drink producers together and lets us foodie’s experience exciting new culinary ideas! Visit the official website for more details Food & Drink Scotland
I am off this Saturday to visit Loch Lomond where they are hosting a whole range of food, drink and experiences, so watch this space for some new and exciting produce ideas.