Tuesday, January 19, 2010

19 January 2010: Haggis

Yeah, yeah, I know, no blogs for weeks.

All very busy here though, and little time to blog. No time even to make more sausages, much to the disappointment of the British contingent in Kokomo who before Christmas all came over to our place and sampled some of the Lincolnshire specials. A number of them asked if I'd make some more for them, and I said I would - but as yet no time. Made bacon again too, and getting to the end of that now so there'll be more to follow soon. Gareth - yes, this time I'm happy enough with the process that I'll photo-document it so you too cane learn how to make delicious dry-cure back bacon for a fraction of the price you pay at Waitrose or Jungle Jims (depending on which country you're in).

Meantime, as the photo above indicates, Gloria somehow managed to smuggle me through an Argyle home shirt, which after receiving it caused the team to win two in a row (not so good since then, though). In other news, the highly controversial Christmas Lights of Kokomo video seems to finally have bottomed out in terms of viewers - final total for the year a little over 9200, 98% of which were viewers in the USA: seems it got a little viral here in Kokomo. Bill Barclay leaped up to 14000 views total, helped in part by a comment someone left on The Guardian website which included a link.

Lots of other news too, and no time for it now but here's the real reason for blogging today: HAGGIS.

Yup, Burns night is coming up and so it's time to get your haggis. If you don't know what it is, it's a Scottish meat product (and by-product) where you take the unused parts of the lamb (kidney, heart, lungs, eyeballs etc), pummel it to pieces and insert a lot of seasoning to mask the flavour, put it all into a container (probably intestine), and boil it for a couple of years until it's tender. As you might gather from the above, I don't like it. But...

Well, those good folks at Upton's of Bassett (I have no shame in promoting their store, particularly if I start actually selling the sausages they helped me create) have started making their own haggis, and have now invented the Hampshire Haggis (it has watercress in it, among other variations). And they've made a video detailing how they make it, and what the customers think...

So there... what more could you ask for Burns Night? That is, if you like Haggis. And if you like Robert Burns, come to that. My Nan once described him as "that dirty old man".

Don't know what she thought of haggis, though.


Nick Gibbins said...

You don't like haggis? Heretic!

Seriously, not all haggis is the same. I dislike the McSween's haggises (hagges?), even though they're supposedly 'the best haggis in the world'. I'm going to be making another batch of the Lunan Haggis this year (Issy's grandfather's recipe here) - this evening, in fact - for our Burns Night on Saturday.

DuncMcRae said...

I think the plural is 'haggis' as in: "Four thousand six hundred and ninety one irradiated haggis!"

All my English grammer I learned from Red Dwarf.

Interesting to see a genuine recipe though. I have a strong aversion to offal generally but if the seasoning is strong enough I might be able to handle it.

Doug said...

I think my mum gets her haggis from Texas, strangely?

They got back from a UK trip yesterday (including an afternoon in Kutis Royal Thai Pier) and she had 6lbs of it waiting for her, I used to hate it, now I quite like it and werthers originals in my rocking chair.


She didn't do a single burns night when she lived in the UK, now she come over all Russ Abbot http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5DQdSuQt0iM

DuncMcRae said...

Texas Haggis... wonder what it's made of? Saw very very few sheep in Texas, but a lot of goats for some reason.

No British imports to the USA of anything meat or meat-like substances: for example, Bovril is a no-no (fair enough, it's essentially boiled-down cow remains) but one import shop in Chicago told me they'd had their 'Smokey Bacon Crisps' seized at customs. Because it didn't say 'bacon FLAVOUR', just 'bacon' - so despite the ingredients list containing no meat, it wasn't allowed through...

Kuti's Royal Thai Pier? That sounds like heaven on earth, sir. Book me a table. For whenever we're next able to visit the UK (ha ha).

Doug said...

Does all this Haggis talk mean you're in line for more queries about your unconvincing accent?