Monday, 6 January 2014

Festive Vegetarian Haggis Wreath for New Year's Eve

New Year's Eve is Hogmanay in Scotland.  We always have vegetarian haggis.  This year I was pleased to find a new way to present it: in a pastry wreath.  I'd seen the idea on Not Quite Nigella and it stuck.  It looked very fancy when I got out our tartan table runner, lit some candles and put out our new Edinburgh serviettes (thanks Jim and Sally).

E loves haggis with a passion that you expect of a Scotsman.  Fortunately he loves the one I make of nuts, beans, oats and vegetables as much as the one made of sheep's stomach, offal and oats.  My problem with it is that I always find it looks a bit bland and colourless.  Since I have started my blog in 2007 I have been searching for interesting ways to serve it.  I am getting better at it.

This wreath is fairly simple once you have made the haggis, bashet neeps and mashet tatties (mashed swedes and mashed potatoes).  Not that I am claiming making these components doesn't take some time.  Once that is done, however, you just spread three layers of haggis, neeps and tatties along the middle of a square of puff pastry.

Shape the pastry into half a wreath.  Mine was a bit skinny at the ends - something I need to work on.  Keep little hands away from any remaining strips of pastry so you can cut these into festive shapes.

Decorate the pastry and brush with egg yolk.  Easy!  I had wanted to try this with nut roast at Christmas.  I didn't have the energy.  New Years Eve is more relaxed with more time to experiment.

E loved it.  He came back for seconds and thirds.  According to him, he had hardly eaten all day.  We ate it served with relish and microwaved broccolini.  And a glass of Crabbies orange spiced ginger beer.  Sylvia had a tiny mouthful of haggis. 

For dessert I served ice cream, raspberries and chocolate sauce.  Then we had a walk around the block and some sparkler fun before trying to settle Sylvia to sleep among the sound of fireworks going off all night.  Not a wild night but it was a little bit fancy.

Previously on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
One year ago:
Edinburgh restaurant: Stac Polly
Two years ago: New year, gingerbread Christmas tree and haggis tacos
Three years ago: Soup for the New Year
Four years ago: New Year's Raspberry Punch
Five years ago: New Year’s Feasting
Six years ago: That’s No’ How You Make Haggis (NYE pt 3)

Vegetarian Haggis Wreath
serves 3-4

1/2 quantity vegetarian haggis*
2 potatoes, chopped
1 turnip (aka swede if you don't live in Scotland), chopped
butter for mashing
seasoning for mashing
2 to 4 sheets of puff pastry
egg yolks for glazing

*Finely chopping all the ingredients in the haggis helps it hold together better - I did mine in the food processor.

Preheat oven to 220 C and lined a large baking tray with baking paper.

Boil potatoes and turnip in salted water in separate saucepans (about 20 minutes each, perhaps a little more for the turnip).  Mash each with a knob of butter and pinch or two of salt.

Layer haggis, mashed potato and mashed swede along the middle of a sheet of puff pastry.  Roll up and cut off any overhanging pastry.  Use a little egg yolk to moisten the seal the edge.  Transfer pastry onto lined baking tray and shape into a half circle.  Repeat with another piece of pastry to complete the circle.  Cut out shapes to decorate - holly, or Christmas shapes if you have little cookie cutters.  Brush with a little egg yolk.

Bake for 15 minutes and then reduce heat to 200 C and bake another 15 minutes (I baked mine at 180 C for the second 15 minutes and it could have been a little browner.)  Slide onto a serving plate and slice to serve.

NOTE: For a vegan version, use a vegan puff pastry, margarine instead of butter for mashed vegies and milk rather than egg wash for glazing the pastry.

On the Stereo:
Folk Songs of Britain Vol 9, Songs of Ceremony

23 comments:

  1. You're awesome. Happy New Year!

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    1. Thanks Hannah - let's just say I have awesome moments :-)

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  2. OMG that looks amazing! Festive to perfection. We call them turnips here too- do you really call it a swede?

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    1. Thanks Nupur - the neeps I refer to are the slightly yellow ones which are also called swedes and rutabagas

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  3. Fantastic lookin' and I adore those serviettes!!!

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    1. Thanks Veganopoulous - yes lovely serviettes - from Scotland - almost seem to nice to use

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  4. Wow, look at you! You've barely finished that brilliant ginger bread house and already you're putting together something like this. It looks gorgeous! What a lovely thing to do.

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    1. Thanks Linda - I got a little rest between the gingerbread house - maybe that house was to blame for me not getting it done for Christmas day :-) Probably better at new year when less competition for glory :-)

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  5. Looks superb! And sooooo effortless you make it seem!

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    1. Thanks Ms Ihua - it wasn't too hard - I have made haggis neeps and tatties enough to find them fairly straightforward so it was just a matter of wrapping them in pastry

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  6. This is such a fun presentation-haggis, neeps and tatties all rolled into one, and so much prettier than in heaps on a plate. I bet it was absolutely delicious too!

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    1. Thanks Emma - haggis neeps and tatties look so dull when just heaped on the plate and doesn't everything taste better with pastry?

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  7. Definitely a little bit fancy! And I think you may have mastered the "serving it attractively" thing - I love the wreath and how effective it looks.

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    1. Thanks Kari - now I just need to master an evenly stuffed wreath - there is always something more to master :-)

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  8. Well, I've never had haggis but I'd love to try your vegetarian version! THe wreath is so pretty!

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    1. Thanks Joanne - oh you should - it is so yummy

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  9. That is one beautiful wreath! I think I'd find it too much even on New Year's Eve, but glad you went to the trouble so I can enjoy vicariously--LOL! And I still remember that haggis. . . yum.

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    1. Thanks Ricki - I kept everything else simple on new years so I could focus on it but haggis not too hard to make and puff pastry out of a packet isn't hard (but I imagine making the pastry would take it to a whole new level of effort)

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  10. Your haggis wreath looks fantabulous Johanna!! :D I love that you did a vegetarian haggis version. It sounds extraordinary!

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    1. Thanks Lorraine - as soon as I saw your wreath I knew it would work in a veg version

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  11. This is gorgeous Johanna! So impressive. Hope you enjoyed Hogmany.

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