Friday, October 22, 2010

In which we are introduced to haggis

Our hostess Mary fed us quite well during our stay at Cairn Eilrig.  Knowing we were off gallivanting in the mountains, she prepared stout fare that would fuel our hikes: thick porridge, bacon and sausage, eggs, beans, mushrooms, oatcakes, endless toast and jam.

As a breakfast person, I loved it.  I tucked it all away everyday.  Even if I wasn't quite so hungry one morning or two, I found room for her porridge and sausage.  It was that good.

So one day, J. and I were raving about the sausage she served us that morning.  It was a very unassuming black patty of crumbling matter.  But once we took a bite, its rich earthy flavor and subtle seasonings blew us away.  It was that good.

We asked Mary about it.

"Oh, it's not sausage," she said, "It's haggis!"

A little back story here: I'm normally quite willing to try new foods.  Even fish.  But not organ meats.  I draw the line there.  When people asked us, upon hearing that we were going to Scotland, whether we were going to try haggis (go find out exactly what it is - I'll wait), our response was a flat "no."

And sly Mary slipped it to us underneath our very noses.

Even as the reality of what I had consumed that morning slapped me upside the head, no sense of revulsion followed.  It was that good.

Butcher's shop, Aviemore, Scotland

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