The search for Scotland’s best-kept secret ingredient: Dundee & Angus
This week’s blog focuses on Dundee & Angus – a region that produces some of my favourite things.
I love marmalade and Dundee has a long association with it, with the first marmalade being made in the city in the late 1700s. One of the most popular dishes at the restaurant uses our amazing homemade marmalade served in a jam jar served in three different forms – plain marmalade, marmalade ice-cream, and some marmalade mousse.
Another favourite of mine is gingerbread. The small town of Kirriemuir in Angus makes some of the best gingerbread in the world. It’s amazing. At Bistro Moderne, one of our most popular dishes uses gingerbread as a ‘sandwich’ to accompany our chicken terrine. So it’s not just for pudding!
But there’s so much more going on in the area. From mouth-watering seafood and rich meats, to pastries and soft fruits, excellent produce is in abundance. One of my favourite asparagus suppliers is based on Eassie Farm near Glamis.
Angus is also home to one of Scotland's most distinctive fish dishes, the Arbroath Smokie. This world-famous delicacy is made by smoke-curing haddock over hot oak chips, giving the fish a strong flavour and a rich golden colour. It now has protected status from the European Union which means only haddock smoked using these traditional methods, within a five-mile radius of Arbroath, can officially call itself an ‘Arbroath Smokie’.
If it’s quality meat you’re after, you’ll not go far wrong with a visit to Scott Brothers butchers who have been supplying locally-farmed beef to the region for over 80 years – mince ‘n’ tatties anyone? They also make a mean steak pie.
And I can’t possibly leave out one of the best savoury pastries in existence, the famous Forfar bridie. Similar to a Cornish pastie, this short crust pastry turnover is filled with mince and onions and (I may be a bit biased here) tastes miles better. If you’re in the area, get yourself along to James McLaren & Son; they’ve been making them for over 100 years, so they really know what they’re doing.
But back to sweet things. Dundee’s famous cake is enjoyed with cups of tea the world over. And when I’m in Dundee, I can’t resist a wee visit to Goodfellow and Steven. They make exceedingly good cakes!
But now it’s over to you. Do you make an amazing dish with a product from Scotland? It can be anything from meat to seafood, condiments to herbs, or even alcohol. As long as it’s produced in Scotland, it’s eligible. Just tell me what it is, and describe how you use it.
Email me at email@example.com before Friday 8th August 2014 and you could be in with a chance of being selected to join me in a cook-off at Eat Drink Discover Scotland.
Visit www.eatdrinkdiscoverscotland.co.uk for terms and conditions.
Join me as I explore the Kingdom of Fife next week.
Eat Drink Discover Scotland, which is taking place at the Royal Highland Centre between 12th and 14th September, will bring to life the rich diversity of Scotland’s brimming larder by featuring exhibitors from the length and breath of the country. One for the foodies, it will be offering something for every palate, plate and price range and with a regional focus, it will be providing opportunities for smaller rural food producers to share centre stage with more established brands. The weekend will also include demonstrations and masterclasses such as chocolate workshops, cocktail making, game butchery and craft bakery.
Follow the search on Twitter @EatDrinkSco