Traditional Scottish haggis is helping butchers across the north to find the recipe for success.
Three Highland butchers have secured gold awards in the Scottish Craft Butchers Haggis Products Awards 2019.
Kingussie butcher Donald Gilmour gained gold for his unique haggis-based product – Ruthven Stacks – named after the former nearby Army barracks.
Mr Gilmour said the product was completely unique to his butchers shop and can’t be purchased anywhere else in the world.
Without giving away too many secrets, he revealed the table-topping product was a stick of haggis, black pudding, chopped chicken, mushroom sauce and puff pastry.
The popular butcher makes his own haggis and is continually looking at ways of expanding the sales beyond Burns Night to cover the remainder of the year.
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Dingwall butchers Fraser Brothers has won gold for its delicious Haggis Lasagne.
The lasagne with a Scottish twist has already proved a winner with the customers and manager Murray Mackay voiced his delight at earning plaudits from the industry and their peers.
He said: “We make our own haggis and it is an extremely versatile product which can be featured in many different dishes – including our oven-ready lasagne. It’s a great favourite which now sells all year round.”
Culloden butcher Ali Paul has also created a winning way with haggis. Owner Mr Paul has won gold for his Haggis and Chicken Parcel recipe.
He said the product was made with top quality ingredients including the company’s own haggis which is made to a 20-year-old traditional recipe.
Mr Paul said: “It’s an oven-ready combination of chicken fillet, haggis, bacon and honey and mustard sauce.”
Around 60 butchers from all over Scotland submitted a wide variety of handcrafted products which were judged blind in one of the industry’s most keenly contested awards.
Douglas Scott, Chief Executive of Scottish Craft Butchers, said: “2019 is The Year Of The Haggis and we wanted to encourage butchers to offer their customers delicious alternatives for their Burns Supper feast and for the remainder of the year.
“Scotland’s butchers from the Moray Firth to the Solway Firth have risen to that challenge magnificently and shown the versatility of haggis.
“Judges were impressed by just how novel some of the highly rated products were and they will, without a doubt, see haggis on the menu for many households throughout this entire year.”
Meanwhile, Fraserburgh butcher Bruce Of the Broch scooped the coveted Diamond Award for the best haggis product in Scotland.