An award-winning butcher has claimed that Scotland’s best known national dish is not actually Scottish – and that it should be made using venison, not sheep.
Joe Callaghan, 50, of Helensburgh, Argyll, told the Daily Record he had started making haggis with venison after a friend who had conducted lengthy research on the subject convinced him of its origins. He claims the real national dish of Scotland is not haggis but “staggis”.
Mr Callaghan, who made the claim while entering his own recipe into the Golden Haggis Award at the Oban Winter Festival, said: “Scotland’s national dish is an imposter. The real national dish is staggis.
“Deer is an indigenous species in Scotland. The Vikings brought haggis to Scotland,” he said, adding that his recipe is based on the original Viking way of making the dish, and that “it should really be made with venison plucks, not sheep plucks.”
His claims will put paid to those made by historian Catherine Brown, who in 2009 caused uproar by stating haggis was not Scottish but had instead been invented by the English.
Ms Brown said she had discovered a haggis recipe inside an English book from 1615 – almost two hundred years before Robert Burns’ poem ‘To A Haggis’. She told the BBC the first reference to a haggis she could find in Scottish publications only dated back to 1747.
Register for free to continue reading
Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism
By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists
Already have an account? sign in
Join our new commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies