Monday, 7 December 2009

From the Indian Subcontinent to Scotland with love

Or is it the other way around…

Over the past few years there has been much interest in the haggis fritter, vegetarian haggis pakora or bhaji, and even haggis samosa with various TV food shows making noises about it. I first tasted the vegetarian haggis samosa in Edinburgh and really liked the idea and the flavour. Recently I introduced it to my nephew, who wasn't as keen on it as I was.

I was first introduced to haggis pakora by a Scottish friend of Pakistani heritage in 2001 when she brought in a tray of savoury delights, amongst them were these tasty little morsels. I was well impressed with how many South Asian families, whether Sikh, Hindu or Muslim had incorporated some uniquely Scottish flavours into their cuisine, hence Scottish South Asian fusion food. There is even a 'curried black pudding' recipe, but I won’t go there, unless of course it’s made with the vegetarian version of black pudding.
Anyway in the tradition of my South Asian Scottish friends, last week with the left overs from my St Andrews day meal I had decided to create a fusion dish too. I decided to make some ‘clapshot vegetarian haggis tikkia’. For the uninitiated, imagine deep-fried potato cake covered in a spicy batter and you will get the picture of what this dish would be like. I was confident that these savoury bite would be a success, as my Welsh Glamorgan pakoras and even those I made with Welsh Caerphilly cheese early in the year had been, but the true test is the opinions of others, I hoped they would approve.
I served these in pitta bread, but burger buns will do just fine too; however please note aloo tikkia are traditionally eaten with plain roti’s. And what was the verdict. They got the thumbs up and were described as a 'splendid culinary fusion of two cultures' by whom? My nephew of course! I know, I know he is biased. If you get a chance to make them, please do, and give me your verdict.
I had left the cooked tikkia in the oven to stay warm, but they were in there too long and some had burst, but this did not impact on the flavour, just the way they looked.

Clapshot Vegetarian Haggis Tikkia
Makes 12
Follow clapshot recipe here, but reduce quantity by half and allow to cool*. Then add about 225g of cooked vegetarian haggis, 1 finely sliced green chilli (deseeded if you wish) and 1 small onion, finely sliced. Combine well using your hands. Now take a small handful of the clapshot haggis mixture and shape into flat cakes, you should get about 10 – 12, depending on size.

150g gram flour (also known as chickpea flour)
½ - 1 teaspoon chilli powder or to taste
1 generous teaspoon garam masala
1 teaspoon Aijwain seeds also known as Bishops Weed seeds) available at most South Asian stores.
Season with salt as required
Water as required
Vegetable oil for deep frying
Mix all the above ingredients except for the oil, until you have a dropping and coating consistency. Set aside. Pour in enough oil in a pan till it reaches about ½ inch up the side. Heat the oil. Gently dip each tikka piece into the gram flour batter to coat and then gently drop in tikka pieces, cook on one side until golden about 3 minutes, then flip over and cook other side. Once cooked, remove from the pan and place onto a kitchen towel to drain excess oil before serving.
*As I made these clapshot haggis tikkia with leftovers from my St Andrews day meal, I had to guess the ingredient quantities in the recipe, so if you do decide to have a go, please check consistency and alter accordingly.


  1. Wow! I've never had this dish, but it looks so wonderfully flavorful and filling! Looks good!

  2. Very inventive! I am certain that I would love this recipe. That is very cool that you found a compromise for your nephew.

  3. I think finding a bit of color in the garden this time of year makes it more brilliant, Mango. I had a beautiful rosebud on one of my plants that I was tempted to pick and bring inside, but I waited too long and a deer got it. Ah well, they have to eat too.
    Love to see peeks of your garden. :)

  4. oh boy, they sound amazing. I love the way you look at leftovers. I ususally stretch to having whatever is left on toast.

  5. These looks and sounds so good! I've never tried this kind of food before but it sounds simple to make and I think I'll love it, thanks for the recipe:)

  6. love the sound of fusion food and these look delicous. Pakora's are always my starter of choice when we eat asian food. yummy

  7. Thanks for coming by Christine.

    Thanks Sarah.

    Ah shame about the rose bud Barbara,
    but at least it was enjoyed by a beautiful creature and not weathered by the wind or rain.

    Thank you Louise,
    I have got better in trying to recreate something good with my left overs, beside I would have felt really bad wasting all that good 'clapshot' and 'vegetarian haggis', which probably could have been another meal for 2. But I wasn't going to eat it cold!

    It was good Oraphan.

    Thank you so much Nic. I think you would like these. Not too spicy.

  8. What an amazing idea. I love these. I am bookmarking this right away!

  9. Super recipe, I can't wait to try it. I have a Best Blog award for you on my blog. I hope you would like to accept it but quite understand if you prefer not to participate. Best wishes, Michelle

  10. Wow,...these look so festive & good,...truly appetizing! Yum!

  11. Oh Jacqueline,
    I am so pleased that you like the idea of these. I do hope you enjoy them when you get round to making them.

    Oh Chellebab,
    Thank you so much for the nomination. I really do appreciate the nomination. It is always Rewarding enough for me that someone is kind enough to become a follower or thinks my blog is worthy of nomination. Also Thank you so much for raising awarness of my humble blog, it is most appreciated.

    Thank you Sophie.

  12. I love the fusion and creativity in these - I had haggis nachos in Edinburgh recently and also saw haggis stromboli - just love how much it is being used now - I am tempted to make double the amount of haggis at new year's just to use it for something like this

  13. Thanks Johanna.
    The haggis has certainly become a versatile ingredeint in recent years, I do think it is thanks to the vegetarian version. I haven't seen a haggis stromboli though. I have another veggie haggis in the freezer, after that has gone, I intend to make some from scratch, there are so many recipes about including one from the famous Hendersons in Edinburgh.


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