And when I say kids, I mean of the big variety too. My teens like anything wrapped in breadcrumbs or battered, and lets face it, there are times when the easiest option is indeed the best option for us on a day to day basis. Yes, I make lots of fresh and home cooked meals, but I’m not adverse to also grabbing something from the freezer on a day where I’m rushed, and throwing something hassle free onto an oven tray, to quickly feed the ravenous hordes.
I also have to say, that mashed anything is one of the hardest things I take food photographs of. Dollops of food just never looks great on a plate, even though it tastes awesome on the way into your belly….
My mother, is very fussy with her food, and for me, looking at a plate of haggis, while traditional, isn’t the most attractive of dishes. But realistically, that’s not what Burns Night is all about, and that’s the occasion when us Scots celebrate the birthday of the bard, Robert Burns, poet extraordinaire. If you want to find out more about it, click here.
Mash Direct sent us some samples of their Burns Night Fare, which included traditional Neeps and Tatties (mashed swede and mashed potatoes), and Burns Bites, or a mix of Haggis, Neeps and Tatties, coated in a crispy gluten free crumb.
I quite liked how Mash Direct quote Robert Burns, or who I know more as Rabbie Burns, as do many of us up in Scotland.
Fair fa’ your honest, sonsie face,
Great chieftan o’ the puddin’-race!
Aboon them a’ ye take your place,
Painch, tripe or thairm;
Weel are ye wordy o’ a grace
As lang’s my arm.
(From the poem, ‘To a Haggis’ by Robert Burns)
These Burns Bites are cooked in the oven at 180 Degrees for 10-12 minutes, while the neeps and tatties can easily be popped into the microwave, so it’s an easy take on a traditional meal, and very very quick. I added a little ground peppercorn over the top, actually forgetting for a moment, that haggis can be quite spicy, but it was fine. I’d recommend churning up the tatties before serving, by mixing in the tray, which softens them up, and of course, neeps and tatties would never taste the same, without a generous blob of butter melting into the top.
The Burns Bites would also do quite well as finger food, with neeps and tatties mixed in with the haggis. It softens the flavour, so the bites aren’t overpowering, and make them quite easy for little ones to manage. Three Burns Bites is 181 calories, so that’s a perfect amount for me, who always watches what she eats. We had ours with that other national drink, Irn-Bru, in place of a good dram.
The Burns Bites are a new product for Mash Direct, and in celebration, they wrapped their John Deere tractor in Tartan. What a fitting sight…. Burns night is the 25th January this year, and the 258th since Rabbie Burns was born.
Many of us here, do celebrate, with a Ceilidh, a meal at home, or with friends, and Scottish communities everywhere seem to enjoy the celebration. With the neeps and tatties, grown on their Farm, Mash Direct decided to bring out a product mixing it all together.
Mash Direct Burns Bites and Neeps & Tatties can be found in Tesco Scotland, Morrison’s Scotland, Nisa Scotland and Independents throughout Scotland.
Find out more at Mash Direct. Thank you for our samples.