Experiencing Scottish Cuisine

HaggisBlood Sasage-IMG_1470Continuing with my feeling that eating the foods the locals eat helps one experience the region, I have tried, on more than one occasion, both blood sausage and Scottish haggis.  Is there any other kind?  The haggis is traditionally made by the butcher in town who closely guards all his special ingredients and cooking methods.  What is common in all haggis is it mostly consists of a sheep’s innards, the heart, liver, lungs, esophagus and other various parts.  You are supposed to put a bowl under the esophagus while cooking to catch the drippings as it usually hangs out of the cooking pot, not completely fitting inside.  This mixture is boiled for numerous hours whilst you are soaking the cleaned and rinsed sheep’s stomach in cold water for up to ten hours.  The boiled innards are then sewn inside the stomach with some oatmeal added to absorb the liquid.  All this is then cooked for three more hours.  Don’t forget to poke a few holes in the stomach to let air out when cooking.  Traditionally it is served with neaps and tatties, or blended turnips and mashed potatoes.

The blood sausage contains four cups of pig’s blood per normal recipe size recipe.  It is generally a breakfast item, served with eggs.  Cheers!

Chinese Street Food, Restaurant Food

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Drying fish in a Shanghai ally

I am proud to say I eat just about any food.  If it is on a menu, I’ll try it.  As a young kid, I ate rattlesnake, squirrel, turtle steak, frog legs, kangaroo tail soup and just about any odd item found on a menu.  The squirrel and frog legs I hunted, which makes me sound a bit like a hillbilly, but it was fun as a kid.  I really looked forward to new foods in China.  However, overall, it was disappointing.  Despite us driving past miles and miles of red peppers piled high in the fields, the food was boiled and bland.  Boiled broccoli, boiled cauliflower, boiled bok choy.  Also, the Chinese do not differentiate between breakfast, lunch and dinner foods.  In the morning you had much of the same foods on the buffet the prior night.  Very few of the dishes were great.  However, I did get to add to my list of unusual foods, which included:

  • Camel tendons
  • Donkey Skin
  • Carp, full of bones
  • Pigs Ear, nothing but cartilage, what else?
  • Horse sausage

My main question was who got the good cuts of meat if in the fine restaurants they were feeding me donkey skin and camel tendons???


Quail on a stick

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Outdoor cooks

No, I did not get to eat the above fish.  They were hanging in a Shanghai ally.  Oddly enough, I did not see any flies in these open air markets full of hanging food.
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