Sunday, 25 January 2009


I'm not usually one for Burn's Night, not being Scottish, an' all. In fact it usually passes me by without me noticing it at all. This year is different, of course. It's the 250th anniversary of the birth of Robbie Burns, who wrote lots of unintelligible stuff like this:

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 o' a grace
As lang's my arm.

Now the thing you have to have on Burn's Night is a haggis (and also bashed neeps, tatties, lots of wee drams and a piper for the dancin'). Haggii were fairly easy to come by in Dubai, believe it or not. You could get frozen Sweeney's, or you could get a canned version. But here in sunny Madrid, not a chance. I thought, fleetingly, that I might make my own, and so I looked up some recipes on the interweb. Easy! All you need is a sheep's pluck, and its stomach. Hmmm, and what's a sheep's pluck, exactly? Well, it's the heart, lungs and liver. You chop 'em all fine and mix 'em up wi' some onions, oatmeal and spices. Then you sew them intae the stomach and boil fra long time.

Bleaghhh! I don't know if I'll ever be able to eat haggis again, now that I know what goes into it.


the real nick said...

That, and the 'Big Yinn' put me off Scotland forever.

alexander... said...

You got a real-world belly LOL for that post, Keefie!

Pluck. Yummy!

Macthomson said...

Deep-fried Mars bars are a viable alternative.

Susan said...

For a less scary alternative mix oatmeal, finely chopped onions, garlic, chopped lambs liver, lamb mince (we use kofta here but probably not easy to get in Madrid!), chestnuts (not the sugary kind!), and a good handful of herbs and a lot of spices especially black pepper and salt to taste. Then steam in a pudding basin for a couple of hours.

Not as good as the real thing but good enough and tasty!

Jayne said...

Ewwwwwwww keefie........just ewwwww!

Glasgow Guitar Guy said...

Hi Keef. Do you make the haggis pie I´ve been hearing about on Facebook? I´m desperate for it for this Burn´s Night. The thought of making it myself is .... unthinkable! And 40 quid to get it delivered from Scotland just makes a canny Scot ill!

Keefieboy said...

GGG - yes! Email

Glasgow Guitar Guy said...

Oh no, I´ve just ordered from Scotland - cost me a fortune. As for the GGG I´m his sister trying to run a blog for him. Me, I´m at ....and I´m definitely a lassie. Anyway, I´ll be in touch since I really fancy those pies. Thanks a lot! Mo.