Our farewell meal in Scotland had to be haggis, neeps and tatties – something I look forward to every year.
Mr Macsween is famous for his superior haggises so we bought a breeding pair (the smaller one is the male). They turned out to be a bit frisky with several attempts to escape from the kitchen and a bit of hide and seek on top of the fridge. We got them down with a ladder and some cheese (haggises are partial to cheese). I had to get my father’s help to round them up after they’d made a bid for freedom across the garden. But once back in the kitchen they were denuded and swiftly despatched.Then out came the whisky to celebrate. Haggis and whisky are never far apart. This Macallan 15 year old was rather good. These haggises were microwaved – you can boil them in water but they tend to explode which can be messy.
Next step: prepare the neeps (turnip). For those of you not familiar with root vegetables, this is a turnip. Years ago my (English) aunt, a farmer’s wife, said to me in astonishment ‘You eat turnips? But we feed them to the cows….’. Considering the Scots managed to invent television, penicillin, Dolly the Sheep etc (and I could go on) on a diet of porridge and turnips, her cows are probably extremely intelligent. Peel and chop the turnip, cook in salted boiling water than mash it up, adding butter and milk. Et voila, bashed neeps.