Burns Night is nearly upon us. For many Scots, the haggis will take centre stage on the evening of January 25.
The Burns Night supper is a celebration of the life and legacy of the famous Scottish bard, Robert Burns, so finding the best of our national dish is a must.
You can opt to buy the award-winning Macsween haggis which is found almost anywhere, but here are five butchers in Edinburgh and the Lothians which specialise in their own haggis recipes...
Findlays of Portobello
This independently run family butchers is renowned for its award-winning haggis products.
Their traditional haggis consists of lamb, beef, oatmeal, onions and a ‘secret seasoning,’ and is sold in minimum packages for two servings, priced at £4.55.
Findlays also sell a large traditional haggis which provides four to five servings for £9.06.
Other haggis varieties on offer include vegetarian, venison, gluten-free and Asian haggis - with the usual spices replaced with cumin, coriander and gram masala.
Visit: 116 Portobello High Street, https://www.findlaysthebutchers.co.uk/
Crombies of Edinburgh
Their haggis recipe was perfected by the late Alex Crombie, who founded the shop, and the recipe has changed very little ever since.
Crombies haggis is made with an oaty, spicy lamb and beef mix and can be delivered in vacuum packs.
The butcher’s website also provides various video and text instructions on how to cook the haggis in different ways, particularly helpful if you’re new to trying the dish.
This butchers offers a range of haggis sizes, from its family sized haggis to the ‘ceremonial haggis’ serving up to 12 people - and there is also a vegetarian option. For more details on prices and deliveries, visit the website below.
Visit: 97 Broughton Street, Edinburgh, http://www.sausages.co.uk/
W.M Christie Butcher
Situated in the Bruntsfield area, this family butcher has been running since 1889 and prides itself on top quality products.
Butcher Angus Christie says they use beef instead of lamb in their recipe and that their meat is sourced from Hornig’s in West Calder. The beef is mixed with oats and onions and filled into a natural-lined case. Sizes range from 1lb to family sized (3lb) and a serving for up to 10 people (4lb). The haggis is priced at £11.50 a kilo (2.2lb).
Vegetarian haggis options are not available and customers need to visit the shop to get their meat.
Visit: 186 Bruntsfield Place, Edinburgh, https://www.facebook.com/WM-Christie-Family-Butcher
Boghall Butchers - Bathgate
Butcher Paul Boyle says their haggis recipe consists of lamb offal, onions, a mix of rougher and finer oats and a seasoning of salt, black and white pepper, Jamaica pepper for ‘tang’ and ginger for ‘sweetness.’ The recipe, which is filled in a natural skin lining, has stayed the same for 43 years.
Haggis sizes range from servings for 1-2 people up to servings for 6-8 people, with pricing at a very reasonable £7.60 a kilo (2.2lbs).
This butcher shop, like many others, has diversified their haggis product and offers a range of options. These include: haggis olives; chicken balmoral (chicken stuffed with haggis and wrapped in bacon) and chicken balmoral pie (chicken in cream sauce with haggis); ‘Rabbie’s braw haggis round’ (haggis, carrot, turnip and parsnip with chopped chives and Drambuie).
Boghall Butchers also produce a vegetarian haggis pie, a Scotch pie shell layered with veggie haggis, turnip and potatoes.
Visit: 65 Margaret Avenue, Bathgate, https://www.facebook.com/sayayetaeapie
Anderson’s Quality Butchers - North Berwick
Run by couple Ryan and Moya Anderson, this butchers makes their haggis on site and has been particularly successful of late with their traditional haggis and variations on the national dish.
At the end of November, the butchers was runner up in the People’s Choice award at the 2018 Golden Haggis Awards which took place at Oban Distillery.
And they won a Gold award for their baked pheasant and partridge fillets stuffed with haggis wrapped in pancetta, and a silver award for the popular British Rose veal stuffed with haggis, cashew nuts and sundried tomatoes.
Mr Anderson says their haggis sizes range from servings for 1-2 people up to ‘chieftain size,’ which usually serves about 10. The haggis, which is lamb offal mixed with oats, onions and special spices, is cased in natural skin and is priced at £8.98 a kilo (2.2lb).
Visit: 36 High Street, North Berwick, https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Shopping---Retail/Andersons-Quality-Butchers-Of-North-Berwick
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