Top Scottish Chefs Online For The Royal Highland Showcase
Just like we’re all going to miss the Royal Highland Show this year, we Scots are made of strong stuff and the virtual version will bring us together until we can once again say hello to our friends, stroke the Clydesdales, shop until ’till we drop in and maybe taste a Scottish gin or two along the way!
The sights and sounds will be online… but for tastes, you’ll have to cook up the recipes in your own kitchen this year! We have a plethora of chefs lined up for you, so be sure to watch our fabulous demo program.
This year, instead of Scotland’s Larder Live Cookery Theater, we’re bringing you home chefs to cook up a feast. Neil Forbes of Café St Honoré makes North Ronaldsay mutton and pigeon; Paul Newman from Erichel cooks his own big black pig and new season rhubarb; and Craig Wilson, of Eat on the Green, breaks new ground with butters and Scottish beef, as well as an exciting strawberry dessert.
Finally, Billy Hamilton of The Buccleuch Arms, accompanied by his chef Gareth Gilder, will treat you to their double act at Hardiesmill and in their own walled garden, with Jacob’s Ladder beef and wild deer.
I guarantee that whatever your cooking skills you will learn the tips of these experts and have fun along the way. Their year round support for Scottish produce is absolute and their loyalty to the Royal Highland over the years is exceptional. By sharing their recipes, there is no excuse not to be inspired and enjoy a feast.
Elsewhere in the food world we will have the Scottish Bread Championship, created by and in association with Scottish Food Guide and Scotland The Bread.
Like the Scottish Dairy Championships, they will be judged at Ingliston and filmed for viewing during the event. We have an excellent number of entries in all categories, a roster of specialty judges and a wonderful showcase of artisan breads and dairy products in the ring!
The Royal Highland Show of Scotland is invaluable, if not invaluable: for agriculture, food production, Scots, tourism and as a global showcase for the Scottish brand. The show is part of our heritage and at the same time provides a glimpse into contemporary Scotland – its agriculture, food and drink, country sports, skills and crafts.
Few places in the world have such an awesome event yet and it must be enjoyed and cherished … so until we can return by the hundreds of thousands to Ingliston, let’s savor the morsels we can online and come together to a virtual hug!
And here’s a taste of what to expect.
To start … we have Neil Forbes from Café St Honoré’s Borders wood pigeon with celeriac and salted beets
For 2 people
Preparation time: 45 minutes; cooking time: 20 minutes plus 3 hours to salt the beets
Border pigeon to start at Café St Honoré
1 whole pigeon for a starter; or 2 whole pigeons for a main course
1 tablespoon of cold-pressed rapeseed oil (to marinate the pigeon)
1 garlic clove, crushed (to marinate the pigeon)
2-3 sprigs of thyme (to marinate the pigeon)
75g good bacon, skinless, boneless
1 beetroot, with the skin
1 golden beet, with the skin
100 ml double cream (for the celery puree)
1 garlic clove, crushed (for the celery puree)
3 sprigs of thyme (for the celery puree)
2 tablespoons of cold pressed rapeseed oil
A few wild garlic leaves
1 shallot, finely chopped
1 tablespoon of curly parsley
A few knobs of butter
Isle of Skye Salt
1-2 tablespoons of good sauce or reduced chicken broth
A few sprigs of chervil
Heat the oven to 150 ° C / thermostat 2
Cover the beets with a little oil and salt, then wrap in foil and bake for three hours, or until tender. Once cooled, peel and slice. Put aside.
Make a marinade for the pigeon using the oil, garlic and thyme in a deep plate. Rub the pigeon and let it sit for a few hours or overnight.
Cut half the celeriac into cubes then boil them in salted water. Put aside.
Make a puree with the remaining celeriac. Cut into small cubes and heat in a saucepan over the heat with the cream, garlic, thyme and seasoning until tender. Remove the thyme and mash in a food processor or pass through a fine sieve. Check the seasoning and keep warm.
Remove the breasts from the pigeon and season with salt and pepper. Heat a tablespoon of oil in a pan until hot, then fry the breasts for a minute or two on each side. Add a little butter with the garlic and thyme from the marinade. Once golden, set aside on a clean platter.
Return the pan to the heat and add the rest of the oil and the bacon. Fry over moderate heat for 3 to 5 minutes until just golden brown. Then add the diced celeriac and beets to the pan until they begin to brown. Then add the chopped shallots and about a tablespoon of butter. Stir in the parsley and set aside.
Melt wild garlic in a small saucepan with the rest of the butter and a little seasoning, it will only take a minute or two to cook.
Just before the plate, quickly heat the pigeon under the grill and heat the sauce.
To serve, place a tablespoon or two of mash in the center of a hot plate and garnish with wild garlic. Then arrange the bacon, diced celeriac and beet around the edge.
Cut the pigeon lengthwise, salt and add the wild garlic on top. Pour a spoonful or two of the cooking juices around the dish and decorate with a few chervil leaves. Use immediately.
For the principal:
Introducing Neil’s North Ronaldsay Mutton with Herb Breadcrumbs and French Peas
For 2 people
Preparation time: 20 minutes; cooking time: 30 minutes
Neil’s Dish features North Ronaldsay mutton … looks like a real treat
1 piece of boneless leg (top) of North Ronaldsay mutton (one leg will do)
1 tablespoon of cold-pressed rapeseed oil (to marinate the mutton)
1 garlic clove, crushed (to marinate the mutton)
1 sprig of rosemary (to marinate the mutton)
1 cup fresh or frozen peas or peas
4-6 potatoes (he likes Jersey Royals), washed (with the skin on) and steamed until just tender, then cut in half
1 head of small gem lettuce, grated
75g good bacon or four thick slices, cut into diced bacon
1 shallot, finely diced
2 tablespoons of fresh breadcrumbs
1 spring onion
1 tablespoon of curly parsley, chopped
1 sprig of rosemary, chopped
1 or 2 cloves of garlic
A few chopped mint leaves
2-3 tablespoons cold-pressed rapeseed oil
1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard
a good knob of butter
Isle of Skye Salt
Make a marinade with the oil, garlic and rosemary in a deep plate. Rub the mutton and let sit for a few hours, or better, overnight.
Heat an ovenproof pan on the baking sheet over medium heat then add a tablespoon of oil. Season the mutton and add it to the pan with the rosemary and garlic from the marinade, turning it over and coloring it all over.
Add the potatoes, season again, then add a small knob of butter to color the meat and add flavor, it will take a few minutes. Set the potatoes aside and keep warm.
Either place the pan with the mutton in a hot oven (180 ° C), or under a grill to finish cooking, being careful not to overcook the meat. It will take a few minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand.
To make the breadcrumb filling, add a tablespoon of oil to a saucepan and bring to moderate heat. Add the shallots and garlic and sauté until golden brown. Add the breadcrumbs and season with S&P, then add finely chopped herbs like parsley and rosemary. Add a little butter and stir. Once cooked, set aside
Then fry the bacon in a tablespoon of hot oil on the baking sheet for two to three minutes until golden brown. Now add the shallots, spring onions, peas, a little butter and stir well. Season and add the grated lettuce, mint leaves and a little chopped parsley.
Brush the mutton with mustard and top with breadcrumbs. Give it a little flash of heat under a hot grill. Remove from heat and cut. It must be beautiful and pink.
To serve, place the peas on one side of the dish and the potatoes on the other and place the mutton on the peas. Serve immediately with a tiny drizzle of cold-pressed rapeseed oil.