This impressive dish will be a triumph at your Burns Night supper.
Vegan. Hands-on time: 15 mins. Total time: 1 hour 15 mins (plus soaking).
Contributed by (March 2003).
Photo © Veg World
The haggis is Scotland's most famous contribution to the culinary arts. Vegetarians who know what it contains would leave the country rather than risk eating it. But some years ago I developed this recipe for vegetarian haggis (or rather, vegan haggis) which I have served many times since. Not only is it healthier than the original, it tastes a lot better too.
Haggis is, of course, the centerpiece of the traditional Burns Night supper, held each year on January 25. It is served amid much pomp and ceremony - not to mention whisky. It is usually eaten with mashed potato and neeps (rutabaga), the two vegetables often being mashed together with a liberal dose of ground pepper.
This recipe can be prepared in advance, ready to bake before serving. The quantities are for four people, but don't worry if the servings look small - the dish is very filling.
- ½ cup (3 oz, 75 g) fine oatmeal (the pinhead variety works best)
- 2/3 cup (4 oz, 110g) of brown or green lentils
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 2 large carrots, finely grated
- 4 to 6 mushrooms, sliced
- 1 tsp. ground spices (your choice of cumin, turmeric, paprika or nutmeg, in any combination)
- 1 tbsp. soy sauce
- One 14-oz (400 g) can of kidney beans, drained and rinsed
- 2 cloves of garlic, finely minced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Knob of dairy-free margarine
Oven: Pre-heat to 375F (190C)
Put the oatmeal in a bowl and cover with water. Let it stand for at least an hour. Drain thoroughly.
Place the lentils in a pan of water and boil rapidly for 20 - 30 minutes or until soft (the time will vary according to the type of lentils). When the lentils are ready, drain and rinse them in a sieve.
Sautée the onion in the oil until it is soft. Add the carrots and mushrooms, and cook for a little longer. Then add the spices, soy sauce, cooked lentils and about a quarter of the kidney beans.
Using a food processor or blender, purée the remainder of the beans to form a thick paste (add a little water if necessary to prevent it getting too stiff). Add this to the lentil and vegetable mixture.
Finally, add the drained oatmeal, salt and pepper, and the garlic. If the mixture looks too dry, add the margarine. Mix well.
Transfer to an oven-proof dish and bake for 30 to 40 minutes.
Note on quantities and temperatures:
Quantities are given in American (cups), imperial (oz, fl oz) and metric (g, ml) units. Do not mix the units - use one or other system throughout the recipe.
See also How much does a cup weigh?
oz = ounces, fl oz = fluid ounces, g = grams, ml = milliliters, tsp = teaspoons, tbsp = tablespoons.
Oven temperatures are given in degrees F (Fahrenheit) and C (Celsius).
For fan-assisted ovens, reduce the temperature by 20F or 10C.