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Seven new ways to cook haggis this Burns Night – from some of Scotland’s top chefs

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BURNS night is here, and the shops are stocked full of that great chieftain o’ the pudding-race, haggis.

While Scots across the country will no doubt be tucking in to the classic trio of haggis, neeps and tatties, there is a lot more that the world-famous Scottish product can be used for.

We asked some of the country’s top chefs to suggest some different ways to serve the classic fare.

Haggis-Stuffed Partridge Breast

Craig Douglas, Executive Chef, Ness Walk, Inverness

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Website: nesswalk.com

I think because Haggis, Neeps and Tatties is such a traditional Scottish dish, a lot of chefs are nervous to change something that works so well. Sometimes it’s best not to mess with classics. However there is definitely more scope with dishes if you look outside the box. The main thing to remember is although haggis is made from lamb offal, it does not taste of lamb. That gives us more scope to marry flavours together. A classic is chicken and haggis, so an example of how I would be re-inventing that with a bit of luxury could be sous vide partridge breast stuffed with haggis mousse. I would serve it with an oatmeal granola crumb, potato and truffle puree, braised baby turnip, and a lightly spiced red wine jus. This would be a play on a classic, with more finesse and detail but without stepping away from the original flavours.

Haggis Bon Bons

Rob Morton, Owner, Brea – Scottish Restaurant, Stirling

Website: brea-stirling.co.uk

Our restaurant is just down from Stirling Castle so we get loads of tourists wanting to try haggis – our Haggis Bon Bon starter is perfect for them to get their first taste! Ball up haggis, pané in flour, egg wash and panko breadcrumbs. Deep fry for 2 – 3 mins and serve with a warm roasted turnip purée and a whisky sauce (ours takes a few days to prepare but you are looking to mix a white wine base, gravy base, flambée some whisky and reduce it). We get great feedback on the dish from tourists and locals alike.

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Haggis Pastilla, a new twist on some old-school classics

Roberta Hall-McCarron, Owner and Chef, The Little Chartroom and Eleanore, Edinburgh

Website: thelittlechartroom.com and eleanore.uk

Roberta suggests a host of different ways of using haggis. She says pastillas are a nice idea, which involves enclosing haggis in layers of buttered filo pastry to offer a Scots take on the Moroccan dish. Haggis sausage rolls are a similar idea in a bit more of a traditional British form. Roberta suggests serving both with a turnip ketchup or pickled walnut ketchup. Other ideas include a chicken balmoral – which sees the breasts stuffed with haggis and wrapped in pancetta – or a beef haggis wellington. There are plenty of ways to use the pudding: “When I did Meatopia [a London-based food festival] two years ago, we did an ox tongue, beef haggis taco with romesco, pickled red onion, and a caramelised onion emulsion,” Roberta says.

Haggis Quesadillas

David Simister, Head Chef, Cafe Roma, Glasgow

Website: Cafe Roma on Facebook

A simple and fast Scottish twist on a Mexican dish. Start by mixing up a pico de gallo fresh salsa then place in a bowl and set aside. Heat a pan with a teaspoon of oil and lightly toast a tortilla on both sides. Sprinkle a mature Scottish cheddar all over, crumble on haggis and sprinkle with syboes. Cover with a lid and wait for the cheese to melt and the haggis to heat. Fold in half, cut into wedges and serve with the salsa.

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Haggis Lasagne

Scott Davies, Head Chef, The Three Chimneys, Colbost, Isle of Skye

Website: threechimneys.co.uk

On a hot BBQ or over a gas burner, burn celeriac, skin on, until charred and black all over, then leave to cool. Remove outer skin and put in a low oven overnight to dry out. Blitz until fine ash powder. Thinly cut eight slices of celeriac. The rest finely grate and deep fry until golden brown. Drain and season with salt. For a simple sauce, reduce brown chicken stock with shallots. Reduce by two-thirds then finish with double cream, smoky whisky, and whole grain mustard. Warm haggis with a little butter and chicken stock, and add chopped parsley. Warm the celeriac sheets. Build a lasagne by layering haggis, fresh sticks of cox and granny smith apples, sauce, then celeriac. Repeat. Finish with sauce, crispy grated celeriac, and a good dusting of ash.

White Haggis Sweetbreads

John Munro, Head Chef, The Gannet East, Glasgow

Website: thegannetgla.com/east

Both The Gannet East and its sister restaurant The Gannet in Glasgow are influenced by the Scandinavian approach to cooking. We put a very strong focus on working with the land and not against it. Be that foraging, preserving or using small local suppliers to minimise our carbon footprint. A way I love to use haggis is to use it as a stuffing. At The Gannet East we make our own haggis and add cured beef fat and sweetbreads to make it even more indulgent. We then pipe this haggis into sweetbreads and glaze with a whisky and lamb sauce reduction. This gets served with a puree made by emulsifying brown butter into “neeps” and crispy slices of a potato terrine.

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Haggis Croquette

Chris Loye, Head Chef and Owner, Flavour, Tarbert, Isle of Harris

Website: flavour.scot

For this year’s Burns night the main I’ll be serving on my eight course tasting menu is Isle of Harris venison, a haggis croquette in panko breadcrumbs, turnip puree and a whisky pepper sauce. The cream I use is from Mossgiel organic farm in Ayrshire which was once owned by Robert Burns himself.

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