The author, one of the "Two Fat Ladies" of television cookbook fame, handles the history of the haggis with aplomb in this little cookbook. Haggis, for the unititated, is a dish commonly made in a sheep's maw, of minced lungs, hearts, and liver of the same animal.
However, the haggis is much more than a mere meal.
The haggis, or some version of it, may be found in the histories of countries as varied as ancient Greece, Sweden, and the United States. Yet the haggis is most closely associated with Scotland and has come to represent that country just as pasta represents Italy.
Scotland may thank its beloved bard, Robert Burns, for this. Burns immortalized the dish in perhaps his best-known poem, "Address to the Haggis." In it, he refers to the haggis as the "Great Chieftan o' the Puddin'-race!"
How far the haggis had come!
Originally a meal of the lower classes who could not afford to waste any edible portion of their livestock, the haggis mysteriously transformed into a delicacy deemed worthy of royalty. Queen Victoria, an enthusiast for most all things Scottish, said of the haggis, "I find I like it very well."
Clans and Tartans ($8.95), A Little Book of Scottish Baking ($8.95), and A Life of Robert Burns ($8.95) are the other books in Pelican's Little Book series.
THE HAGGIS: A Little History
By Clarissa Dickson Wright
Illustrated by Clare Hewitt
60 pp. 4 x 5¾
EAN: 978-1-56554-364-5 hc