Burns Night 2015 – 5 Scottish Recipe Ideas

Hello all! So tonight is Burns Night, in memory of the great Scottish poet, Robert Burns. (If you’re unfamiliar, then please click here).

In memory of Robert Burns, we decided to write a post with 5 Scottish recipe ideas for your dinner tonight, so that you can join in with the celebration of his life.

1. Baked Haggis


Of course, the Scottish traditional Haggis is a bit part of Burns night. Below is BBC Good’s simple 2 step recipe for baked haggis!


  • 450g haggis

Step 1 – Preheat the oven to fan 180C/conventional 200C/gas 6. Remove the outer packaging from the haggis then prick all over with a fork, wrap in foil like a baked potato and bake in the oven for 1 hour.

Step 2 – To serve, split open the haggis with a sharp knife and spoon the contents over neeps and tatties or serve separately.

2. Cock-a-leekie Soup


Another traditional Burns Night meal. This is a James Martin recipe, that is full of gorgeous flavours!


  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 medium chicken, jointed into pieces
  • 180g smoked bacon lardon
  • 2 chopped carrots
  • 2 chopped celery sticks
  • 1-2 leeks
  • splash of white wine
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/2 bunch thyme sprigs
  • 15-20 stoned prunes

Step 1 – Heat the oil in a large heavy-based saucepan until hot. Fry the chicken pieces in batches until golden brown, then remove and set aside. Add the bacon, carrots, celery and leek tops, and fry for 5 mins until it all starts to brown. Pour off any excess fat.

Step 2 – Splash in the wine and boil rapidly, scraping the bottom of the pan. Return the chicken pieces with the herbs and add enough cold water to cover. Slowly bring to the boil, then simmer for 40 mins until the chicken is tender.

Step 3 – Remove the chicken to a plate, cover with foil and leave to cool slightly. Strain the soup into a clean saucepan and discard all the other ingredients. Leave to stand for a few mins and skim off any fat that rises to the top. Pull the meat from the chicken bones and tear into large chunks.

Step 4 – Simmer the soup with the chicken, leeks and prunes for another 20-30 mins. Season to taste and serve with really good bread.

3. Seared Scottish Salmon with Heather Honey Dressing


A really lovely Scottish salmon starter that will warm up your taste buds, or do it on a larger scale as a really light main!


  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 450g salmon fillet, skinned
  • 2 large oranges
  • 3 small red onion
  • 225g large, cooked, peeled prawns
  • 2 x 150g bags bistro leaves or mixed salad leaves
  • Dressing ingredients: 125ml olive oil, 2 tbsp. wholegrain mustard, 1½ tbsp. heather honey or clear honey, 1 tbsp. mayonnaise, 1 tbsp white wine or raspberry vinegar

Step 1 – The day before, heat the olive oil in a non-stick frying pan, then cook the salmon, skinned side down, for 12-15 minutes, turning half way through. It should be cooked all the way through and opaque in the centre.

Step 2 – Meanwhile, make the dressing. Put olive oil, mustard, honey, mayonnaise and vinegar with some salt and pepper into a blender and whizz until well combined, then set aside.

Step 3 – Peel and segment the oranges and remove any pith (work over a plate so you can catch all the juices). Cover the oranges and keep in a cool place. Stir the orange juice into the dressing and store it in a screw top jar. Slice the onions, put into a plastic bag and store in the fridge.

Step 4 – Flake the salmon into large pieces using two forks to tease the flesh apart, then spoon over half the dressing. Cover and chill.

Step 5 – When ready to serve, shake the dressing, put the sliced onion, prawns and orange segments in a large bowl and drizzle over the remaining dressing. Add the salad leaves and toss together lightly. Using your hands, gently lift the mixture on to a large platter and scatter over the salmon flakes. Season with some coarsely ground black pepper and serve immediately.

4. Braised Venison


Venison benefits from long, slow cooking, and this Scottish dish develops a beautifully earthy sweetness – perfect for a special occasion!


  • 2 chopped carrots
  • 140g chopped turnip or swede
  • 2 chopped onions
  • 3 chopped celery sticks
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1kg boned leg or shoulder of venison cut into large chunks (or buy ready-cubed venison for stewing)
  • 5 tbsp plain flour, seasoned with salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp. redcurrant jelly or rowan or hawthorn jelly)
  • 450ml dry red wine (Rioja is good)
  • 450ml beef stock
  • 2 thyme sprigs
  • 1 bay leaf

Step 1 – Heat oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Fry the vegetables in a little oil and butter in a heavy-based casserole for 4-5 mins until golden. Tip in the garlic and fry for a further min, then set aside.

Step 2 – Put the venison into a plastic bag with seasoned flour and shake to coat. Add a little more oil and butter to the pan, then fry the venison over a high heat, stirring now and then, until well browned. Don’t crowd the pan – cook in batches if necessary. Set aside with the vegetables.

Step 3 – Add the redcurrant jelly and wine to the pan, and bring to the boil, scraping up all the bits that have stuck to the bottom. Pour in the stock, then add the thyme, bay leaf, meat and vegetables. Season if you like and bring to the boil. Cover and transfer to the oven for about 1½ hrs or until tender. Remove from the oven and check the seasoning.

5. Dundee Cake


A traditional Scottish favourite!


  • 100g blanched almond
  • 180g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 180g light muscovado sugar
  • Zest of 1 large orange
  • 3 tbsp. apricot jam or marmalade
  • 225g plain flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 3 large egg, beaten
  • 100g ground almond
  • 2 tbsp. milk
  • 500g mixed dried fruit
  • 100g whole glacé cherry
  • Glaze ingredients: 2 tsp. caster sugar, 1 tbsp. milk

Step 1 – Put the almonds into a small bowl and pour over boiling water to just cover. Leave for 5 mins then drain in a sieve and leave to dry.

Step 2 – Preheat the oven to 180C/160 C fan/Gas Mark 4. Line a deep loose-based 20cm cake tin with baking parchment.

Step 3 – Put the butter in a large bowl and beat well until soft. Add the sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Stir in the orange zest and apricot jam.

Step 4 – Sieve together the flour and baking powder. Add the eggs to the creamed butter and sugar, a little at a time, beating well between each addition. If the mixture starts to curdle, stir in a little flour.

Step 5 – Add the remaining flour and ground almonds and mix well. Mix in the milk and then add the dried fruit and cherries and mix gently together.

Step 6 – Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and spread level using the back of a spoon. Arrange the whole almonds close together in neat circles on the top of the cake. Bake in the oven for 45 mins.

Step 7 – Lower the oven temperature to 160C/140 C fan/Gas Mark 3 and cook for a further 60–80 minutes. Check the cake after 50 minutes by inserting a wooden or metal skewer into the cake. When it’s done it should have just a few crumbs attached. Check every 10 minutes – it’s important not to overcook this cake so the centre will be a little soft.

Step 8 – When cooked, remove the cake briefly from the oven, put the milk and sugar into a small pan and heat gently until the sugar has dissolved. Brush over the top of the cake and return the cake to the oven for 2-3 mins. Remove and allow the cake to cool in the tin. When quite cold remove from the tin and wrap in foil and keep for at least 2 days before cutting.

So! We hope you enjoy your Burns Night dinner – we certainly will!

Love from the Katz Dancewear Team x



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