Reading about the details of the original Haggis recipe from Scotland can be intimidating, so I would like to share a fun finding from my research for this recipe. The national animal of Scotland is Unicorn! Did you know that?
Mention of Haggis can be found in the records as old as 1430. Traditionally, Haggis is made with minced heart, lungs, and liver of sheep, then mixed with oatmeal, vegetables, and spices and then stuffed and cooked inside sheep’s stomach.
About the dish:
Full disclosure: The real recipe of haggis sounds torturous to me and reading through the whole thing is quite scary. No apologies for the choice of adjective because torture sounds apt when death and killing of a living being are involved. That said, I think it must have been justified for the time this dish gained popularity because of the limited access to fresh plant-based ingredients. Animals protein was easily accessible in the cold of winters when nothing else would grow during that time. People were making the best use of each and every bit of the animal (unlike today). So, Scottish people, I respect you for this crazy creation (and Scotch of course).
About the guest:
I first heard about Haggis in an episode of Parts Unknown (by Anthony Bourdain) a few years back and learning about the ingredients and of this dish, I had never thought I would be making it myself. As a part of my project Across Kitchen Lines, I reached out to Nikola from Scotland to cook a traditional Scottish dish with me and sure enough, she picked Haggis. Guess what, Nikola is a vegetarian.
From Nikola: “I’m Nicola, born and live in Glasgow, Scotland but an avid traveller. I was a travel agent for 10 years when I was younger and have visited over 40 countries. I’ve also spent a month in the Amazon jungle with an indigenous tribe and 3 months in India studying yoga and been diving with sharks 😁
My mum and gran taught me how to cook but I’ve been inspired and taught, since then, by people from so many different cultures. Food and learning about new cultures is one of my favourite things about travelling.
I’m also a social worker and work for an NGO supporting women and girls – card carrying feminist 😁
My favourite books are dystopia fiction, 1984 (orwell), brave new world (huxley) and Fahrenheit 451 (bradbury) are amongst my favourites.
My favourite food is Asian. I know that is very broad, so is my taste in food 😁”
- 1 medium or 200 gm finely chopped onion
- 2 numbers or 150 gm diced carrots
- 8 number or 100 gm chopped mushrooms
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2 tbsp oil
- 50 gm red lentils (masoor)
- 50 gm green gram (moong)
- 50 gm of soy protein (Nutrella, Indian store)
- 65 gm rolled oats (dalia)
- 50 gm barley
- 1 cup vegetable broth
- 2 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp cinnamon powder
- 1 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp garam masala/ allspice
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg
- 20 gm ground hazelnuts
- 20 gm ground almonds
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- Soak the lentils for about two hours
- In a saucepan, add lentils, oats and barley, 1 tsp salt, and thrice the amount of water by volume and bring to a boil. Let it simmer for 20 mins or till lentils are soft
- Soak the soy protein in hot water for 15 mins. Then drain and squeeze the water out. You can replace this with any ground meat alternative like Beyond Meat, Impossible etc.
- In a skillet, heat 2 tbsp of olive oil or butter. Add chopped garlic and onions and cook till onions have some color on. Add a pinch of salt while cooking onions to accelerate the process.
- Add chopped mushrooms and cook till mushrooms are well cooked.
- Add carrots and continue to cook for another 2-3 mins.
- Add all the spices and crushed almonds and hazelnuts and cook for 1 minute.
- Add the boiled lentil, grain mix and the soy protein to the cooked vegetables and gently combine everything.
- Add the vegetable broth and cook on medium heat till the broth is all absorbed.
- You can eat this as is or transfer the mixture to a greased baking pan and bake it for 30 mins at 375 F. I stuffed this mixture in a bell pepper also and loved the results.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 224Total Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gCarbohydrates: 24gProtein: 13g
Nutrition information isn’t always accurate. I would not make any major life decisions based on this.
I would like to thank Nikola for working with me on this amazing dish. I use Instagram and created #acrosskitchenlines because of supportive people like Nikola. Head on over to her page at @bowfullasoul on Instagram to check out her amazing creations. She takes delicacies from different parts of the world that she has traveled to and puts her unique spin on them to create these amazing bowls.
As far as this Haggis recipe goes, I highly recommend giving it a shot. It is extremely flexible and you can add or remove ingredients as you wish. I served mine in a bowl to match the presentation with my guest Nicola, with a side of mashed sweet potato with chives and savory Sourdough starter crispy pancakes. You can enjoy it as a side, meal, or a condiment – it is that versatile. I have stuffed it in peppers, seared it, and topped it on ramen, also broiled it on a pizza.
If you are looking for any help in making this recipe or trying a vegetarian diet in general, feel free to reach out to me. You can comment here or DM me on Instagram. If you give this recipe a try, share your pictures with me on Instagram @t_as_in_tarun or use #acrosskitchenlines. If you have a recipe you want to cook with me, count me in! Please send me a message or leave a comment.