Sunday, December 07, 2008

"Great chieftain o the puddin'-race"

Being a good Southern boy offal has always been a part of the culinary world. I have grown up eating and loving fried chicken livers and gizzards as well as calves liver. Scrapple too was always there. It was not until I started traveling the world that I had my horizons expanded even further in the "eat the whole critter" concept. The Greeks, Italians and French are all big into not wasting anything edible and have some wonderful recipes for offal. I really didn't get exposed to haggis until about ten years ago when Madam and I were in Scotland for Hogmanay (New Years) and were served the traditional New Years meal all properly served with the haggis being piped in and cut with the dirk and chased with a good single malt whiskey. It seems the "Great Puddin'" is making a comeback.

It's back.
Take a sheep's heart, its liver, and lungs, mince together with onion, oatmeal, spices, and salt, and boil in the animal's stomach for three hours. It is, of course, haggis, and now, it seems, the English just can't get enough of Scotland's national dish.

UK supermarkets are reporting a surge in the popularity of the dish that poet Robert Burns described as the "Great chieftain o the puddin'-race".

Marks & Spencer has seen a 35 per cent increase in sales of haggis compared with this time last year, while Asda, Waitrose, and Sainsburys have all seen rises of more than 10 per cent.

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